Is chloramphenicol making a comeback?

Orna Nitzan, Uri Suponitzky, Yoram Kennes, Bibiana Chazan, Raul Raz, Raul Colodner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Background: Due to increasing antimicrobial resistance there has been renewed interest in old drugs that have fallen into disuse because of toxic side effects. Objectives: To evaluate the susceptibility profile, in our hospital, of Enterobacteriaceae and Streptococcus pneumoniae isolates to chloramphenicol and to compare them with the susceptibility to amoxicillin-clavulanate. Methods: All isolates of Enterobacteriaceae and S. pneumoniae recovered in our lab during a one year period were tested for susceptibility to chloramphenicol and amoxicillin-clavulanate or penicillin, respectively. Results: Of 413 Enterobacteriaceae isolates, 182 (44.1%) were resistant to amoxicillin-clavulanate, but only 76 (18.4%) were resistant to chloramphenicol. Of 189 isolates of S. pneumoniae, 4 (2.1%) were highly resistant to penicillin and 73 (38.8%) were partially resistant, while only 2 (1.1%) were resistant to chloramphenicol. None of the 24 S. pneumoniae isolates causing invasive diseases exhibited resistance to chloramphenicol Conclusions: In an era of increasing resistance to many antibiotic preparations, chloramphenicol might have a role in the treatment of intraabdominal and respiratory tract infections.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)371-374
Number of pages4
JournalIsrael Medical Association Journal
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Amoxicillin-clavulanate
  • Chloramphenicol
  • Enterobacteriaceae
  • Streptococcus pneumoniae


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