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Low-dose liposomal amphotericin B in the prevention of invasive fungal infections in patients with prolonged neutropenia: results from a randomized, single-center trial.

Author(s): Penack O, Schwartz S, Martus P, Reinwald M, Schmidt-Hieber M, Thiel E, Blau IW

Affiliation(s): Department of Hematology, Oncology, and Transfusion Medicine, Charite-Campus Benjamin Franklin, Berlin, Germany. olaf.penack@charite.de

Publication date & source: 2006-08, Ann Oncol., 17(8):1306-12. Epub 2006 Jun 9.

Publication type: Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

BACKGROUND: We performed a prospective, randomized, open-label trial to evaluate the efficacy of low-dose liposomal amphotericin B (L-AmB) to reduce the incidence of invasive fungal infections (IFI) in patients with hematological malignancies and prolonged neutropenia (>10 days) following intensive chemotherapy. PATIENTS AND METHODS: In 219 neutropenic episodes (NE) of 132 patients randomization was performed. Patients received either 50 mg L-AmB every other day (arm A) or no systemic antifungal prophylaxis (arm B). RESULTS: In the first NE of each patient the incidence of proven or probable IFI (primary end point) was five of 75 patients (6.7%) in arm A and 20 of 57 patients (35%) in arm B (P=0.001). Invasive aspergillosis occurred less frequently in patients receiving L-AmB-prophylaxis (P=0.0057), whereas the reduction of invasive candidiasis did not reach statistical significance (P=0.0655). In all NE the incidence of IFI was five of 110 NE (4.6%) in arm A versus 22 of 109 NE (20.2%) in arm B (P<0.01). Adverse events, possibly related to L-AmB, were observed in five NE (4.6%) and L-AmB was discontinued in three NE (2.8%). No grade 3 or 4 toxicities were observed. CONCLUSIONS: Antifungal prophylaxis with low-dose L-AmB proved to be feasible and effective in our trial.

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