Empiric Antibiotics for Brain Abscess

Base empiric therapy on presumed source of abscess and Gram stain results

Source: mouth, ear, sinus

  • [Penicillin (mouth) OR cefotaxime (ear/sinus)] + [metronidazole]

Source:  neurosurgery / post-op

  • [ceftazidime OR cefepime OR meropenem OR imipenem] + [vancomycin]

Source: penetrating trauma

  • [ceftriaxone or cefotaxime] + [vancomycin] +/- [metronidazole  (sinus involvement)]

Source:  hematogenous spread (IE, multiple abscess)

  • [ceftriaxone or cefotaxime] + [vancomycin] + [metronidazole]

Source: unknown

  • [ceftriaxone or cefotaxime] + [vancomycin] + [metronidazole]

 

Dosages:

  • Cefepime 2g IV q8h
  • Cefotaxime 2g IV q4-6h
  • Ceftriaxone 2g IV q12h
  • Ceftazidime 2g IV q8h
  • Imipenem 500-1000mg q6h
  • Meropenem 2g IV q8h
  • Metronidazole 15mg/kg IV load then 7.5mg/kg IV q8h;  usually 1G load & 500mg q8h
  • Nafcililn 2g IV q4h
  • Oxacillin 2g IV q4h
  • Penicillin G 20-24 M units / day IV in 6 divided doses
  • Vancomycin 15-20mg/Kg IV q8-12h

 

Reference:

Uptodate: Treatment and prognosis of bacterial brain abscess, accessed 01/10/2017.

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