A systematic review of vancomycin dosing and monitoring in burn patients

Breanna L. Carter, Kendra M. Damer, Todd A. Walroth, Natalie R. Buening, David R. Foster, Rajiv Sood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


Vancomycin pharmacokinetics are significantly altered following burn injury, requiring a higher total daily dose to achieve adequate serum concentrations. Wide interpatient variability necessitates close, frequent monitoring of serum concentrations for efficacy and safety. The aim of this study is to systematically evaluate published data regarding vancomycin pharmacokinetic alterations in burn patients, to determine whether evidencebased recommendations for dosing and monitoring can be formulated, and to identify future research opportunities. The systematic review included studies published in English, involved human subjects with at least a 10% TBSA burn who received vancomycin intravenously, and obtained serum concentration(s). Database searches returned 130 titles for review. Twelve studies met a priori inclusion criteria. The most common dosing regimens in adult and pediatric patients were 5 to 20 mg/kg/dose every 6 to 8 hours. Mean trough concentrations were 7.24 ± 1.5 mg/L. Only 12.5% of reported trough concentrations were within the currently recommended range of 10 to 20 mg/L. Although no consistent dosing recommendations were provided, all studies recommended close monitoring of trough concentrations. Based on limited clinical outcomes data, standardized recommendations for vancomycin dosing and monitoring in burn patients cannot be made. Higher total daily doses (40-70 mg/kg/day) and increased dosing frequency (every 6-12 hr in adults) may be necessary to achieve current target trough concentrations. Future research goals include prospective investigation of clinical outcomes related to initial doses, loading doses, monitoring peak and trough concentrations, and adverse effects. Further data on the effects of burn size, concomitant diseases, inhalation injury, and time since injury may improve the accuracy of vancomycin dosing in burn patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)641-650
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Burn Care and Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Rehabilitation

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