The objectives of the study were to determine the effectiveness and incidence of adverse events of ofloxacin otic solution for suppurative otitis media compared with other treatments. All randomized controlled trials and nonrandomized comparative clinical trials published from 1966 to 2000 using ofloxacin otic solution as one of the interventions were reviewed and data were extracted and analyzed. Eleven clinical trials (9 randomized and 2 nonrandomized) enrolling 1,484 adults and children were finally included in the analysis. Five studies employed clear concealment procedure in the allocation of treatment whereas evaluation of outcome was at least single-blinded in 6 trials. The probability of overall cure rate was higher with 0.3% ofloxacin otic solution than with other topical or systemic antibiotics in 9 of the studies analyzed (OR = 2.67; 95% CI = 2.04, 3.50). Resolution of secondary outcome parameters evaluated at least 1 week after treatment was higher with 0.3% ofloxacin otic solution: resolution of otalgia (4 trials; OR = 2.41; 95% CI = 1.2, 4.82); resolution of otorrhea (11 trials; OR = 2.78; 95% CI = 2.12, 3.65), and bacterial eradication rate (6 trials; OR = 3.86; 95% CI = 2.54, 5.87). A subgroup analysis of 4 studies comparing ofloxacin otic solution with antibiotic- and steroid-containing otic solution showed a higher cure rate for ofloxacin otic solution (OR = 2.73; 95% CI = 1.52, 4.90). Another subgroup analysis on 3 studies comparing ofloxacin otic solution with oral systemic antibiotics showed higher resolution of otorrhea with ofloxacin otic solution (OR = 2.78; 95% CI = 2.12, 3.65). Of 4 studies with data on adverse events, the probability of adverse events was lower with ofloxacin otic solution than with other topical antibiotics (OR = 0.28; 95% CI = 0.19, 0.42). Subgroup analysis showed that 0.3% ofloxacin otic solution showed better results in terms of overall cure rate, resolution of otorrhea, otalgia, bacterial eradication rate and incidence of adverse events. Whether due to chronic suppurative otitis media (CSOM) or draining tympanostomy tube, the overall cure rate (CSOM OR = 4.86; with tympanostomy tube OR = 2.13) and resolution of otorrhea (CSOM OR = 4.42; with tympanostomy tube OR = 1.66) were likewise in favor of 0.3% ofloxacin otic solution. The studies included in this meta-analysis showed generally homogenous results in all clinical and laboratory outcomes analyzed, except for the evaluation of adverse events. The authors conclude that 0.3% ofloxacin otic solution is better than other otic antibiotic drops and other oral antibiotics in terms of overall cure rate and resolution of secondary outcome parameters. Estimates on the beneficial effects of ofloxacin otic solution are limited to the period of study included in this review.

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