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Clin Transplant. 1997 Dec;11(6):633-9.

Efficacy of oral ganciclovir in prevention of cytomegalovirus infection in post-kidney transplant patients.

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Department of Medicine, Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Pennsylvania State University 17033, USA.


Unlike parenteral gancicovir, the efficacy of oral ganciclovir in the prevention and treatment of cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection in kidney transplantation has not been well documented. This study prospectively evaluated the episodes of CMV infection within the first nine months after transplantation in renal transplant recipients treated prophylactically with oral ganciclovir (750 mg twice a day) over a period of 3 months (oral ganciclovir, N = 22), compared with patients randomly assigned as controls (controls, N = 22) who did not receive any anti-viral prophylaxis. Diagnosis of CMV infection at presentation included serological determination of CMV-specific immunoglobulin M antibodies, CMV immunofluorescence assay [standard culture tube and shell vial] (blood) and virus isolation (urine and tissue). CMV infection occurred in one patient (5%) in the oral ganciclovir group and 6 patients (27%) in the control group (p < 0.05). The episodes of biopsy proven allograft rejections were 5% (1/21) and 18% (4/22) in the oral ganciclovir and control groups, respectively. Except for one, none of these patients developed CMV infection either before or after rejection(s). Controlling for the reason (induction or treatment of rejection) for using cytolytic antibody therapies, we found that prophylactic oral ganciclovir was protective against CMV infection (adjusted risk reduction 0.83; 95% confidence interval, 0.33-0.98; p < 0.05). Neither, the CMV status of donors and recipients nor the treatment for acute rejection had any significant impact on the occurrence of CMV infections. Our results show that oral ganciclovir is an effective and well tolerated therapy in the prevention of CMV infection in renal transplant patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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