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Clin Microbiol Infect. 2011 Dec;17(12):1868-74. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-0691.2011.03483.x. Epub 2011 Sep 6.

Liposomal amphotericin B twice weekly as antifungal prophylaxis in paediatric haematological malignancy patients.

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Paediatric Haematology and Oncology, Children's Hospital III, Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany.


Data on antifungal prophylaxis in paediatric cancer patients at high risk for invasive fungal disease (IFD) are scant. Intermittent administration of liposomal amphotericin B (LAMB) has been shown to be safe and effective in adult patients with haematological malignancies. We prospectively evaluated the safety and efficacy of prophylactic LAMB at a dosage of 2.5 mg/kg twice weekly in children at high risk for IFD. Efficacy was compared with that in a historical control group of patients with similar demographic characteristics not receiving LAMB prophylaxis. A total of 46 high-risk patients (24 boys; mean age, 7.7 years) with 187 episodes of antifungal prophylaxis were analysed. The median duration of neutropenia (<500/μL) was 10 days. LAMB was discontinued in four patients because of acute allergic reactions. Median values for creatinine and liver enzymes at end of treatment did not differ significantly from those at baseline. Hypokalaemia (<3.0 mmol/L) occurred with 13.5% of the prophylactic episodes, but was usually mild and always reversible. No proven/probable IFD occurred in patients receiving LAMB prophylaxis. In comparison, five proven and two probable IFDs were observed in 45 historical controls not receiving LAMB prophylaxis (p 0.01). LAMB prophylaxis had no impact on the use of empirical antifungal therapy. Systemic antifungal prophylaxis with LAMB 2.5 mg/kg twice weekly is feasible and safe, and seems to be an effective approach for antifungal prophylaxis in high-risk paediatric cancer patients.

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