Microbiology and antimicrobial therapy for diabetic foot infections

Ki Tae Kwon, David G. Armstrong

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


In addition to being the prime factor associated with amputation, diabetic foot infections (DFIs) are associated with major morbidity, increasing mortality, and reduced quality of life. The choice of appropriate antibiotics is very important in order to reduce treatment failure, antimicrobial resistance, adverse events, and costs. We reviewed articles on microbiology and antimicrobial therapy and discuss antibiotic selection in Korean patients with DFIs. Similar to Western countries, Staphylococcus aureus is the most common pathogen, with Streptococcus, Enterococcus, Enterobacteriaceae and Pseudomonas also prevalent in Korea. It is recommended that antibiotics are not prescribed for clinically uninfected wounds and that empirical antibiotics be selected based on the clinical features, disease severity, and local antimicrobial resistance patterns. Narrow-spectrum oral antibiotics can be administered for mild infections and broad-spectrum parenteral antibiotics should be administered for some moderate and severe infections. In cases with risk factors for methicillin-resistant S. aureus or Pseudomonas, empirical antibiotics to cover each pathogen should be considered. The Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service standards should also be considered when choosing empirical antibiotics. In Korea, nationwide studies need to be conducted and DFI guidelines should be developed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11-20
Number of pages10
JournalInfection and Chemotherapy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018


  • Antibiotics
  • Diabetic foot
  • Infections
  • Microbiology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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