Battle of polymyxin induced nephrotoxicity: Polymyxin B versus colistin

BALLI TURHAN F. N., Ekinci P. B., Kurtaran M., KARA E., Dizman G. T., SÖNMEZER M. Ç., ...More

International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents, vol.63, no.2, 2024 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 63 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.ijantimicag.2023.107035
  • Journal Name: International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, Chemical Abstracts Core, EMBASE, Environment Index, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database
  • Keywords: Acute kidney injury, Colistin, Nephrotoxicity, Polymyxin B
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Objectives: Nephrotoxicity is the most serious and common adverse effect that limits the use of polymyxins. This study compared polymyxin E (colistin) and polymyxin B regarding drug-related nephrotoxicity. Methods: This study was conducted as a retrospective cohort study in a university hospital between January 2020 and July 2022. Patients older than 18 years and who received colistin or polymyxin B were identified using electronic hospital records. Kidney disease improving global outcome criteria were used for assessing nephrotoxicity. Results: A total of 190 patients, 95 in both groups, were evaluated. The incidence of acute kidney injury during the treatment was higher in the colistin group [52.6% (n = 50) and 34.7% (n = 33), P = 0.013]. In patients who were exposed to high-dose, the rate of nephrotoxicity was higher in patients receiving colistin [25% (n = 3) vs. 76.9% (n = 10); P = 0.017]. Nephrotoxicity was reversible in 64.4% (n = 38) of patients and the reversibility rate was similar (70% and 52.6% for colistin and polymyxin; P = 0.248). In the multivariable analysis, colistin treatment [odds ratio (OR): 3.882, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) = (1.829–8.241)], concomitant vasopressor use (OR = 2.08, CI: 1.036–4.179), and age (OR=1.036, CI: 1.014–1.058) were found to be independent markers of nephrotoxicity. Conclusion: Nephrotoxicity was more common in patients receiving high-dose colistin than polymyxin B. Therefore, the use of appropriate doses of colistin is important in terms of preventing nephrotoxicity. In addition, advancing age and concomitant use of vasopressors contribute to polymyxin-related nephrotoxicity.