Diagnostic errors that lead to inappropriate antimicrobial use.
Approach to Improving Safety
Setting of Care
Overuse of antibiotics is a major factor in the development of certain types of health care–associated infections. This retrospective study found that unnecessary antibiotic use was often a result of diagnostic error, particularly in patients who were empirically treated for urinary tract infections without clear diagnostic evidence. The results of this study imply that addressing diagnostic uncertainty should be a component of antimicrobial stewardship programs.