Prevalence and characteristics of hospital inpatients with reported fluoroquinolone allergy

  • Geoffrey C. Wall
  • Matthew J. Taylor
  • Hayden L. Smith
Research Article


Background Fluoroquinolone (quinolones) antibiotics are commonly prescribed worldwide. Hypersensitivity reactions to these agents have been reported, but little systematic data exists concerning prevalence, types of reactions, or associated factors. Objective To identify the prevalence of patients reporting an allergy to quinolones, types of reactions claimed, and patient information associated with allergy. Setting A tertiary 370 bed level 1 trauma center, located in a Midwestern City in the United States. Method A retrospective cohort study was conducted. Included in the study were all unique patients 18 years or older admitted to our hospital in 2016 with a length of stay ≥ 24 h. Collected data elements included types of reaction, other drug allergies claimed, and patient characteristics. As a comparator group, an equal sized random sample of patients admitted during the same period reporting penicillin allergy was identified. Main Outcome Measure prevalence and descriptors of quinolone allergy. Results There were 327 patients with a quinolone allergy and 317 patients with a penicillin allergy used as the study sample. Hospital prevalence rate for quinolone allergy was 2%. Hives, rash, and nausea/vomiting were the most common reported reactions. These patients tended to be older than penicillin allergy patients and had an association with concomitant intravenous contrast allergy. Tendonitis or tendon rupture was reported in quinolone patients. Conclusion The prevalence of patients claiming a quinolone allergy in the study hospital was 2%. Common hypersensitivity reactions were reported. Data tended to support a possible association between intravenous contrast allergy and quinolone allergy.


Antibiotic allergies Antimicrobial stewardship Fluoroquinolone Hospital inpatients Penicillin United States 



The authors would like to thank the Quality Improvement Department for their assistance in ascertaining initial list of drug allergy patients.


The authors have no financial support or financial conflicts.

Conflicts of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Geoffrey C. Wall
    • 1
  • Matthew J. Taylor
    • 2
  • Hayden L. Smith
    • 3
  1. 1.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesDrake UniversityDes MoinesUSA
  2. 2.PGY-2 Internal Medicine ResidentIowa Methodist Medical CenterDes MoinesUSA
  3. 3.Iowa Methodist Medical CenterDes MoinesUSA

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