Background The diagnosis of bronchiectasis is defined by abnormal dilation of the airways related to a pathological mechanism of progressive airway destruction that is due to a ’vicious cycle’ of recurrent bacterial infection, inflammatory mediator release, airway damage, and subsequent further infection. Antibiotics are the main treatment option for reducing bacterial burden in people with exacerbations of bronchiectasis and for longer-term eradication, but their use is tempered against potential adverse effects and concerns regarding antibiotic resistance. The comparative effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and safety of different antibiotics have been highlighted as important issues, but currently little evidence is available to help resolve uncertainty on these questions. Objectives To evaluate the comparative effects of different antibiotics in the treatment of adults and children with bronchiectasis. Search methods We identified randomised controlled trials (RCTs) through searches of the Cochrane Airways Group Register of trials and online trials registries, run 30 April 2018. We augmented these with searches of the reference lists of published studies. Selection criteria We included RCTs reported as full-text articles, those published as abstracts only, and unpublished data. We included adults and children (younger than 18 years) with a diagnosis of bronchiectasis by bronchography or high-resolution computed tomography who reported daily signs and symptoms, such as cough, sputum production, or haemoptysis, and those with recurrent episodes of chest infection; we included studies that compared one antibiotic versus another when they were administered by the same delivery method. Data collection and analysis Two review authors independently assessed trial selection, data extraction, and risk of bias. We assessed overall quality of the evidence using GRADE criteria. We made efforts to collect missing data from trial authors. We have presented results with their 95% confidence intervals (CIs) as mean differences (MDs) or odds ratios (ORs).
Kaehne, A., Milan, S. J., Felix, L. M., Sheridan, E. S., Marsden, P. A., & Spencer, S. (2018). Head-to-head trials of antibiotics for bronchiectasis (Review). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 1-49. https://doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD012590.pub2