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• Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a progressive disease that has no cure but is treatable. The treatment goal is to have adequate symptom control, decreased exacerbations, prevent hospitalizations and maintain an independent quality of life.

• The review of literature is to determine if the benefits of long-term antimicrobial therapy outweigh the risks in the treatment of severe COPD.

• The gold standard for pharmacotherapy consists of inhaled corticosteroids and bronchodilators (long-acting beta2agonist (LABA).

• Adding azithromycin to standard therapy for patients with frequent exacerbations showed a 27% reduction in exacerbation frequency.

• With prolonged use of antimicrobials there is an increased risk of bacterial resistance. However, in doing this research, it was found that bacterial resistance was not noticed between azithromycin (52%) versus placebo (57%), p = 0.64.

• Although long-term antimicrobial therapy is becoming a hot topic, it is imperative that we continue to study the detrimental development of bacterial resistance.

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chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; antibiotics; macrolides; antibacterial; azithromycin; bronchodilators; standard therapy; COPD exacerbations; adverse effects


Respiratory Tract Diseases

Antibiotic therapy in preventing exacerbations of severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease