Introduction: Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are among the most common causes of sepsis presenting to hospitals. Treating complicated UTIs is extremely important due to their potential mortality. Levofloxacin is a fluoroquinolone antibacterial that has become one of the cornerstones of antibiotic therapy of complicated UTIs and pyelonephritis since its introduction in the 1990s because of its exceptional pharmacokinetic (PK) and pharmacodynamic (PD) profile. However, the emergence of widespread fluoroquinolone resistance over the past decade has prompted investigators to reexamine its place in the treatment of UTI. Areas covered: This literature review summarizes data about the efficacy and the tolerability of levofloxacin in treating complicated UTIs and pyelonephritis. Expert opinion: In the early 2000s, fluoroquinolones became the most commonly prescribed antibiotic in the US. Since then, the resistance rate of Escherichia coli to fluoroquinolones has increased, largely hampering the use of this class of drugs. These data, in association with emerging data about inappropriate prescription and toxicity, have limited its clinical use. For these reasons, a judicious use of levofloxacin and other fluoroquinolones and a careful implementation of infection control procedures are the main available tools for the management of UTIs and pyelonephritis.
- Complicated urinary tract infections
- acute pyelonephritis
- efficacy and tolerability