Home About us Editorial board Ahead of print Current issue Search Archives Submit article Instructions Subscribe Contacts Login 
  • Users Online: 1758
  • Home
  • Print this page
  • Email this page

   Table of Contents      
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 66  |  Issue : 7  |  Page : 1046-1048

5% cefuroxime as an alternative to 5% cefazolin in the treatment of Gram-positive bacterial keratitis

Cornea & Anterior Segment Services, MGM Eye Institute, Raipur, Chhattisgarh, India

Date of Web Publication25-Jun-2018

Correspondence Address:
Samrat Chatterjee
MGM Eye Institute, 5th Mile Vidhan Sabha Road, PO Mandhar, Raipur - 493 111, Chhattisgarh
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijo.IJO_329_18

Rights and Permissions

How to cite this article:
Chatterjee S, Agrawal D. 5% cefuroxime as an alternative to 5% cefazolin in the treatment of Gram-positive bacterial keratitis. Indian J Ophthalmol 2018;66:1046-8

How to cite this URL:
Chatterjee S, Agrawal D. 5% cefuroxime as an alternative to 5% cefazolin in the treatment of Gram-positive bacterial keratitis. Indian J Ophthalmol [serial online] 2018 [cited 2020 Nov 28];66:1046-8. Available from: https://www.ijo.in/text.asp?2018/66/7/1046/234979


5% cefazolin recommended for treating Gram-positive bacterial keratitis (GPBK)[1] has been the mainstay of therapy for decades. In 2017, cefazolin sodium injection, from which the topical preparation was constituted, became unavailable in India. This inconvenienced treating GPBK, as a recent study [2] had reported an increase in fluoroquinolone resistance in Gram-positive bacteria in India, which meant that fourth-generation fluoroquinolones were less effective. While fluoroquinolone monotherapy is popular among ophthalmologists, cornea specialists still prefer fortified antibiotic combination to treat severe infections.[3] Left with little choice, we began using 5% cefuroxime, a second-generation cephalosporin. Cefuroxime-gentamicin has been reported to be equivalent to cefazolin-tobramycin or moxifloxacin in treating bacterial keratitis in one study [4] and ofloxacin in another study.[5] However, topical cefuroxime is not widely used in India like cefazolin.

We retrospectively reviewed medical records of 21 consecutive patients with GPBK treated with 5% cefuroxime from November 2017 to January 2018 and compared the outcome with another cohort of 54 consecutive patients with GPBK treated with 5% cefazolin from April to August 2017. The Institute Ethics Committee approval was taken for the study.

Both groups exhibited similar baseline characteristics [Table 1], except for the higher proportion of males in the cefazolin-treated group (P = 0.04). There was no statistically significant difference in outcome, resolution time, or posttreatment visual acuity between the two groups [Table 2]. 5% cefuroxime topical preparation remained stable for 5–7 days in room temperature, and no ocular toxicity was seen.
Table 1: Comparison between patients with bacterial keratitis treated with 5% cefuroxime* (Group A) and 5% cefazolin (Group B)

Click here to view
Table 2: Outcome in patients with bacterial keratitis treated with 5% cefuroxime (Group A) and 5% cefazolin (Group B)

Click here to view

There are limitations in our study. This is not a randomized control trial, with a head-to-head comparison of cefuroxime and cefazolin, but a comparison with a historical cohort of patients treated with cefazolin. While such a trial would be desirable, in this case, the unavailability of cefazolin makes it impossible to carry out such a study. This study's intention is only to inform ophthalmologists of the potential of cefuroxime to be a viable and safe alternative to cefazolin, and drugs like vancomycin can be held in reserve. Larger controlled trials comparing cefuroxime to vancomycin or fourth-generation fluoroquinolones are required to support our findings. As these trials take considerably more time and resources, we believe that in the interim, our findings should provide useful direction in treating GPBK in India.

Financial support and sponsorship


Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

  References Top

American Academy of Ophthalmology Cornea/External Disease Panel. Preferred Practice Pattern ®. Guidelines. Bacterial Keratitis. San Francisco, CA: American Academy of Ophthalmology; 2013. Available from: http://www.aao.org/ppp. [Last accessed on 2018 Mar 02].  Back to cited text no. 1
Lalitha P, Manoharan G, Karpagam R, Pajna NV, Srinivasan M, Mascarenhas J, et al. Trends in antibiotic resistance in bacterial keratitis isolates from South India. Br J Ophthalmol 2017;101:108-13.  Back to cited text no. 2
Park J, Lee KM, Zhou H, Rabin M, Jwo K, Burton WB, et al. Community practice patterns for bacterial corneal ulcer evaluation and treatment. Eye Contact Lens 2015;41:12-8.  Back to cited text no. 3
Kowalski RP, Kowalski TA, Shanks RM, Romanowski EG, Karenchak LM, Mah FS, et al. In vitro comparison of combination and monotherapy for the empiric and optimal coverage of bacterial keratitis based on incidence of infection. Cornea 2013;32:830-4.  Back to cited text no. 4
Ofloxacin monotherapy for the primary treatment of microbial keratitis: A double-masked, randomized, controlled trial with conventional dual therapy. The ofloxacin study group. Ophthalmology 1997;104:1902-9.  Back to cited text no. 5


  [Table 1], [Table 2]


    Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
    Access Statistics
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

  In this article
Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded160    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal