(HealthDay)—Duration of antibiotic use for acne appears to be decreasing; however, nearly one-fifth of courses exceed six months, according to a study published in the July issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.
Noting that recent guidelines suggest that oral antibiotic therapy for acne should be limited to three to six months, Young H. Lee, M.D., from the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, and colleagues examined the duration of oral antibiotic therapy. Data for the retrospective cohort study were collected from the MarketScan Commercial Claims and Encounters database. The duration and costs of antibiotic therapy were determined using claims data.
The researchers found that 93 percent of courses were less than nine months, with the mean course duration 129 days. Overall, 57.8 percent of the 31,634 courses did not include concomitant topical retinoid therapy. The mean duration was 133 days with topical retinoid use and 127 days without topical retinoid use. For antibiotic treatment longer than six months, the mean excess direct cost was $580.99/person.
"Duration of antibiotic use is decreasing when compared with previous data. However, 5,547 (17.53 percent) courses exceeded six months, highlighting an opportunity for reduced antibiotic use," the authors write.
One author disclosed financial ties to Allergan, Galderma, Intrepid, and Stiefel/GSK.
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