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Study Finds Antibiotic for Acute Rhinosinusitis Is Not Helpful

After three days, no significant symptom difference between treatment with amoxicillin and placebo

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment of acute, uncomplicated rhinosinusitis with amoxicillin does not result in a significant difference in symptoms compared with the use of placebo, according to a study published in the Feb. 15 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Jane M. Garbutt, M.B., Ch.B., from Washington University in St. Louis, and colleagues conducted a randomized, placebo-controlled trial of adults with uncomplicated, acute rhinosinusitis, who were recruited from 10 community practices. Patients received a 10-day course of either amoxicillin 1,500 mg/d (85 patients) or placebo (81 patients) administered in three doses per day; all patients received a five- to seven-day supply of treatments for symptoms of pain, fever, cough, and nasal congestion, for use as needed.

The researchers found that 92 percent of patients concurrently used one or more symptomatic treatment. The mean change in Sinonasal Outcome Test-16 scores was not significantly different between groups on day three or on day 10, but differed at day seven, favoring amoxicillin. No statistically significant difference was observed in reported symptom improvement at day three (37 percent for amoxicillin group versus 34 percent for placebo group; P = 0.67) or day 10 (78 versus 80 percent; P = 0.71); at day seven, more participants treated with amoxicillin reported symptom improvement (74 versus 56 percent; P = 0.02).

"Among patients with acute rhinosinusitis, a 10-day course of amoxicillin compared with placebo did not reduce symptoms at day three of treatment," write the authors.

One of the study authors disclosed receiving royalties for the Sinonasal Outcome Test.

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