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Drug Saf. 2009;32(2):147-58. doi: 10.2165/00002018-200932020-00007.

Hepatotoxicity associated with long- versus short-course HIV-prophylactic nevirapine use: a systematic review and meta-analysis from the Research on Adverse Drug events And Reports (RADAR) project.

Author information

  • 1Department of Medicine, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, and Department of Pharmacy, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, Illinois 60611, USA. j-mckoy@northwestern.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE:

The antiretroviral nevirapine can cause severe hepatotoxicity when used 'off-label' for preventing mother-to-child HIV transmission (PMTCT), newborn post-exposure prophylaxis and for pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis among non-HIV-infected individuals. We describe the incidence of hepatotoxicity with short- versus long-course nevirapine-containing regimens in these groups.

METHODS:

We reviewed hepatotoxicity cases among non-HIV-infected individuals and HIV-infected pregnant women and their offspring receiving short- (<or=4 days) versus long-course (>or=5 days) nevirapine prophylaxis. Sources included adverse event reports from pharmaceutical manufacturers and the US FDA, reports from peer-reviewed journals/scientific meetings and the Research on Adverse Drug events And Reports (RADAR) project. Hepatotoxicity was scored using the AIDS Clinical Trial Group criteria.

RESULTS:

Toxicity data for 8216 patients treated with nevirapine-containing regimens were reviewed. Among 402 non-HIV-infected individuals receiving short- (n=251) or long-course (n=151) nevirapine, rates of grade 1-2 hepatotoxicity were 1.99% versus 5.30%, respectively, and rates of grade 3-4 hepatotoxicity were 0.00% versus 13.25%, respectively (p<0.001 for both comparisons). Among 4740 HIV-infected pregnant women receiving short- (n=3031) versus long-course (n=1709) nevirapine, rates of grade 1-2 hepatotoxicity were 0.62% and 7.04%, respectively, and rates of grade 3-4 hepatotoxicity were 0.23% versus 4.39%, respectively (p<0.001 for both comparisons). The rates of grade 3-4 hepatotoxicity among 3074 neonates of nevirapine-exposed HIV-infected pregnant women were 0.8% for those receiving short-course (n=2801) versus 1.1% for those receiving long-course (n=273) therapy (p<0.72).

CONCLUSIONS:

Therapy duration appears to significantly predict nevirapine hepatotoxicity. Short-course nevirapine for HIV prophylaxis is associated with fewer hepatotoxic reactions for non-HIV-infected individuals or pregnant HIV-infected women and their offspring, but administration of prophylactic nevirapine for >or=2 weeks appears to be associated with high rates of hepatotoxicity among non-HIV-infected individuals and HIV-infected pregnant mothers. When full highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) regimens are not available, single-dose nevirapine plus short-course nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors to decrease the development of HIV viral resistance is an essential therapeutic option for PMTCT and these data support the safety of single-dose nevirapine in this setting.

PMID:
19236121
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2768573
Free PMC Article
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