Delaying antibiotic prescribing made little difference to most symptoms of respiratory infection. It reduced antibiotic use and did not affect patient satisfaction compared with immediate prescribing of antibiotics.
Increasing antibiotic resistance is a global health concern. Many people donít realise that viruses cause most respiratory infections and that antibiotics wonít help. The strategy allows some time for symptoms to improve naturally.
This review of the latest evidence on delayed prescribing for self-limiting respiratory infections is in line with current guidance. On the whole delaying antibiotics made little difference to symptoms compared with immediate use although certain symptoms, like malaise and fever in sore throat, might last a bit longer.
The 11 studies differed widely by patient populations, delay strategies, antibiotics given and settings. This makes it difficult to draw firm conclusions on where delayed prescribing is most appropriate.
Nevertheless delaying antibiotics seems a worthwhile strategy to reduce antibiotic use.
To read more about this, click here to go to the NIHR Dissemination Centre Discover Portal.
<p>Transfusing more recently-collected red blood cells does not improve the chance of survival for critically-ill people who need blood transfusions, compared with blood that has been stored for longer.</p>
<p>This large international study included almost 5,000 critically ill people in intensive care units. Participants were transfused with either the freshest compatible blood available (mean storage 11.8 days) or the oldest compatible stored blood within its use-by date (mean storage time 22.4 days).</p>
<p>There was no difference in deaths between the two groups. Almost a quarter of people died in each group by 90 days. There were also no differences in other outcomes such as length of stay in intensive care.</p>
<p>This provides strong evidence to support the practice of transfusing the oldest compatible red blood cells to minimise waste of precious and costly blood stocks when they become out-of-date. In the UK, this is up to 35 days from donation.</p>
<p>To read more about this, click <a href="http://discover.dc.nihr.ac.uk/portal/article/4000873/transfusing-blood-close-to-its-use-by-date-does-not-increase-deaths-in-critically-ill-adults">here</a> to go to the NIHR Dissemination Centre Discover Portal.</p>