Trend and patterns in the antibiotics prescription for the acute otitis media in Korean children

Shin Hye Kim, Jeong Rok Kim, Jae Jun Song, Sung Won Chae

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    5 Citations (Scopus)


    Background: The Korean Otologic Society developed guidelines for treatment of acute otitis media (AOM) in 2010, which advocated limiting the prescription of antibiotics. However, it is not known whether this has influenced the antibiotic prescription rate. Thus, this study aimed to examine the impact of these guidelines on the patterns in antibiotic prescription for AOM in Korean children. Methods: AOM patients aged less than 15 years, included in the Korean Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service database from 2009 to 2017, were retrospectively identified. We estimated the overall antibiotic prescription rate, antibiotic prescription rates for suppurative and non-suppurative AOM, and types of antibiotics prescribed. Moreover, we analyzed differences in antibiotic prescription rates according to age group, hospital type, and medical department. Results: The overall antibiotic prescription rate decreased significantly from 2009 to 2017. The antibiotic prescription rate for non-suppurative AOM decreased much more than the rate for suppurative AOM. Overall, amoxicillin/clavulanate was the most commonly prescribed antibiotic, followed by cephalosporin. The antibiotic prescription rate decreased by a similar margin in all age groups. Tertiary referral hospitals and otorhinolaryngology department showed the lowest antibiotic prescription rate every year. Conclusions: This study demonstrated the changes in antibiotic prescription rates for AOM following implementation of the Korean AOM treatment guidelines. The practice of antibiotic prescription for children with AOM appears to have decreased every year. However, the overall antibiotic prescription rate is still high. Therefore, clinicians should understand and adhere to the guidelines, and merely observe children with mild AOM symptoms.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number109789
    JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
    Publication statusPublished - 2020 Mar

    Bibliographical note

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2019 Elsevier B.V.


    • Acute otitis media
    • Antibiotics
    • Children
    • Guideline
    • Treatment

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
    • Otorhinolaryngology


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