Annals of African Medicine
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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 65-69

A comparative study of the efficacy of intravenous benzylpenicillin and intravenous augmentin in the empirical management of Ludwig's angina

1 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital; Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana
2 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, School of Dentistry, College of Medical Sciences, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria
3 Department of Community and Preventive Dentistry, School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana
4 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, Accra, Ghana

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Paa-Kwesi Blankson
P.O. Box KB-20, Korle-Bu, Accra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/aam.aam_22_18

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Background: Ludwig's angina is a potentially life-threatening condition characterized by bilateral cellulitis of the submandibular, submental, and sublingual spaces. Intravenous (I.V) penicillin G or amoxicillin-clavulanate (Augmentin) has been recommended for use as empirical management before obtaining culture and sensitivity results. Aim: The aim of this study was to compare the therapeutic efficacies and clinical outcomes of I.V benzylpenicillin with I.V Augmentin in the empirical management of Ludwig's angina. Methods: This was a prospective randomized clinical study carried out to measure the rate of swelling reduction (using the lobar rate, Adam's rate, and interincisal distance) and other clinical parameters among the two drug groups (I.V penicillin G and Augmentin). Descriptive summaries of variables were generated, and Student's t-test was used to compare the mean outcomes of the two groups. Results: A total of 26 individuals participated in the study, consisting of 46% (12) males and 54% (14) females. The participants ranged from 13 to 61 years with mean and median of 34.4 (±12.7) and 35 years, respectively. Only 8% of the cases of Ludwig's angina were not attributable to odontogenic factors, compared to 92% resulting from odontogenic causes. There was no significant difference in the efficacy of the two antibiotics used in this study. Conclusion: The efficacies and the clinical outcomes of the two antibiotics were similar. Benzylpenicillin is probably a suitable empirical alternative where Augmentin cannot be afforded, to reduce the mortality associated with the condition.

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