The ARCHIE Study
The early use of Antibiotics for 'at Risk' CHildren with InfluEnza
For most children flu or a flu like illness (FLI) is a mild and short illness, but is considered to be a factor for secondary complications, including bacterial infections. Children who have an underlying health condition (Diabetes, Down syndrome etc.) are particularly vulnerable to developing secondary complications. Flu and FLI in these children place a great burden on families and healthcare systems.
We conducted a clinical trial to see if giving children an antibiotic (co-amoxiclav) early on in their illness would help them feel better more quickly and prevent complications. We conducted a sub study to take follow up throat swabs at three times for a year to check for any signs of antibiotic resistance from co-amoxiclav treatment. We explored the cost effectiveness of treatment with co-amoxiclav and if it was possible to identify which children would benefit most from it.
What we found:
- The clinical trial indicated there was no evidence of difference between children given co-amoxiclav and those given a placebo.
- The swab sub study indicated that the treatment with co-amoxiclav did not cause children we recruited to develop long lasting resistance to antibiotics.
- We found a trend towards lower overall healthcare costs associated with the co-amoxiclav group in the trial but a bigger trial would be needed to confirm this.
- It was not possible to identify if any specific group of children would benefit more from co-amoxiclav treatment early on in their illness.
This study is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Prorgramme Grants for Applied Research (RP/PG/1210/12012]. The views expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care.
What do we mean by 'at risk' children?
To find out which children with flu are ‘at risk’ of becoming more unwell, we have looked at research studies on conditions which make children more likely to need treatment in hospital if they get flu. The figure below shows the results of our research on medical conditions that increase the risk of complications if children get affected by flu or flu-like illness.
Meet the team:
We are a group of researchers at the University of Oxford. We specialise in studies that answer questions about child health, so GPs can deliver better care and unwell children can get better more quickly.
Healthtalk.org - people's experiences of flu or flu-like illness in chronically ill or disabled children
See and hear parents sharing their personal stories on film of dealing with flu or flu-like illness in children with chronic illness or a disability.