Additionally, women who received azithromycin were less likely to develop endometritis (infection of the lining of the womb) and other infections. They also had fewer hospital readmissions and unscheduled healthcare visits, compared to the placebo group. The results of the study, called A-PLUS, were so persuasive that the study was stopped early due to the clear maternal benefits of azithromycin.
Sepsis is a leading cause of maternal and newborn deaths worldwide, especially in low- and middle-income countries. Azithromycin, an inexpensive antibiotic effective against a broad range of bacteria, is known to reduce maternal infection when given intravenously during cesarean delivery. Two small studies have suggested that giving the oral version of the drug to women who plan to deliver vaginally may reduce maternal or neonatal infection and death.
Currently, there are no specific treatment guidelines for managing maternal sepsis in low-resource settings. However, the use of the Surviving Sepsis Campaign Guidelines has been shown to improve outcomes in the adult population in high-income countries. A modified version of the Surviving Sepsis bundle, called FAST-M, has been developed for the obstetric population in low-resource setting. FAST-M stands for Fluids, Antibiotics, Source Control, Transport, and Monitoring.