OBJECTIVE. This study was a comparison of topical ciprofloxacin/dexamethasone otic suspension to oral amoxicillin/clavulanic acid suspension in children with acute otitis media with otorrhea through tympanostomy tubes.
METHODS. This was a randomized, observer-masked, parallel-group, multicenter trial of topical ciprofloxacin/dexamethasone otic suspension versus amoxicillin/clavulanic acid suspension in 80 children aged 6 months to 12 years with acute otitis media with otorrhea through tympanostomy tubes of ≤3 weeks' duration and visible otorrhea. Patients were randomly assigned to receive either 4 drops of topical ciprofloxacin 0.3%/dexamethasone 0.1% (Ciprodex Sterile Otic Suspension) into the affected ear(s) twice daily for 7 days or 600 mg of amoxicillin/42.9 mg of clavulanic acid oral suspension (Augmentin ES-600 Oral Suspension) every 12 hours for 10 days. Clinical signs and symptoms of acute otitis media with otorrhea through tympanostomy tubes were evaluated on days 1 (baseline), 3, 11 (end-of-therapy), and 18 (test-of-cure), and twice-daily assessments of otorrhea were recorded in patient diaries.
RESULTS. The median time to cessation of otorrhea was significantly shorter with ciprofloxacin/dexamethasone otic suspension than with amoxicillin/clavulanic acid suspension (4.0 vs 7.0 days; n = 79). This resulted in significantly more clinical cures at the test-of-cure visit (85% vs 59%, respectively). Frequent adverse events (>3%) related to ciprofloxacin/dexamethasone otic suspension included ear pain (5.1%) and related to amoxicillin/clavulanic acid suspension included diarrhea (19.5%), dermatitis (7.3%), and gastroenteritis (4.9%).
CONCLUSIONS. Topical otic treatment with ciprofloxacin/dexamethasone otic suspension is superior to treatment with oral amoxicillin/clavulanic acid suspension and results in more clinical cures and earlier cessation of otorrhea with fewer adverse effects in children with acute otitis media with otorrhea through tympanostomy tubes.