Cefotaxime and aminoglycoside treatment of meningitis caused by gram–negative enteric organisms

Sheldon Kaplan, Christian C. Patrick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


We reviewed cases of Gram-negative enteric bacillary meningitis in infants and children treated with cefotaxime at Texas Children's Hospital from January, 1984, through June, 1989. Seventeen of 20 children had an underlying condition predisposing to the development of meningitis. The etiologic organisms in these 20 children (2 days to 12 years old; median, 12 days old) were Klebsiella sp, 9; Escherichia coli, 4; Enterobacter cloacae, 3; Citrobacter diversus, 2; other, 2. With the exception of one isolate of Acinetobacter, all isolates were susceptible to cefotaxime. In addition to cefotaxime 17 children received an aminoglycoside intravenously. Children with meningitis caused by Klebsiella sp. or non-Kliebsiella organisms received cefotaxime for 31 ± 14 and 37 ± 17 days, respectively. Aminoglycosides were administered for 16 ± 10 days in both groups. Five children in each group also received intraventricular doses (1 to 25) of an aminoglycoside (9) or colistimethate (1). The mean durations of positive lumbar, ventricular cerebrospinal fluid or brain abscess cultures were 5.8 ± 4.7 and 7.2 ± 5.0 days after start of therapy in the Klebsiella and non-Klebsiella meningitis patients, respectively. Only three children were normal at the time of discharge or follow-up. Gram-negative enteric meningitis remains difficult to treat despite the excellent in vitro activity of cefotaxime against Gram-negative enterics, in part as a result of the predisposing conditions resulting in the development of this infection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)810-814
Number of pages5
JournalPediatric Infectious Disease Journal
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jan 1 1990


  • Cefotaxime
  • Gram-negative entertics
  • Meningitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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