Of North America

Med Clin N Am 90 (2006) xiii-xiv

Preface

Burke A. Cunha, MD, MACP Guest Editor

Since the author first edited a volume of the Medical Clinics of North America on Antimicrobial Therapy in 1982, the ensuing decades have witnessed a conceptual evolution in antimicrobial therapy. Emerging pathogens and antibiotic resistance have fueled the search for new antibiotics to cope with these ongoing challenges. Over the years, additional antimicrobial agents have been introduced to clinical use. Because the number of newly introduced antibiotics has been limited, clinicians have re-evaluated older agents with activity against newly resistant organisms. Recent decades have also witnessed an increase in the appreciation of the pharmacokinetic aspects of antimicrobials, which has led to an increase in the use of oral antibiotics to treat more and more infectious diseases. This volume of the Medical Clinics of North America on Antimicrobial Therapy builds on the previous volumes of 1995 and 2001, edited by the author, and focuses on the currently most relevant topics relating to antimicrobial therapy.

This issue contains articles written by recognized authorities on antibiotics from the United States and Europe. The contributors have been selected on the basis of their clinical experiences and expertise. The issue consists of 12 articles covering the most important aspects of antimicrobial therapy at the present time. It begins with an overview by Dr. Nancy Khardori of antimicrobial therapy past, present, and future, which places today's antimicrobial therapy in perspective. Dr. Charles Stratton contributes an article reviewing in vitro susceptibility testing versus in vivo clinical effectiveness of antibiotics. Other antibiotic concepts that are problematic for many physicians include the relative merits of monotherapy and

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