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A Prospective Longitudinal Study of the Clinical Outcomes from Cryptococcal Meningitis following Treatment Induction with 800 mg Oral Fluconazole in Blantyre, Malawi

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Rothe, C, Sloan, DJ, Goodson, P, Chikafa, J, Mukaka, Mavuto, Denis, B, Harrison, T, van Oosterhout, JJ, Heyderman, Robert, Lalloo, David ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7680-2200, Allain, T and Feasey, NA (2013) 'A Prospective Longitudinal Study of the Clinical Outcomes from Cryptococcal Meningitis following Treatment Induction with 800 mg Oral Fluconazole in Blantyre, Malawi'. PLoS ONE, Vol 8, Issue 6, e67311.

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Abstract

Introduction
Cryptococcal meningitis is the most common neurological infection in HIV infected patients in Sub Saharan Africa, where gold standard treatment with intravenous amphotericin B and 5 flucytosine is often unavailable or difficult to administer. Fluconazole monotherapy is frequently recommended in national guidelines but is a fungistatic drug compromised by uncertainty over optimal dosing and a paucity of clinical end-point outcome data.

Methods
From July 2010 until March 2011, HIV infected adults with a first episode of cryptococcal meningitis were recruited at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, Blantyre, Malawi. Patients were treated with oral fluconazole monotherapy 800 mg daily, as per national guidelines. ART was started at 4 weeks. Outcomes and factors associated with treatment failure were assessed 4, 10 and 52 weeks after fluconazole initiation.

Results
Sixty patients were recruited. 26/60 (43%) died by 4 weeks. 35/60 (58.0%) and 43/56 (77%) died or failed treatment by 10 or 52 weeks respectively. Reduced consciousness (Glasgow Coma Score <14 of 15), moderate/severe neurological disability (modified Rankin Score >3 of 5) and confusion (Abbreviated Mental Test Score <8 of 10) were all common at baseline and associated with death or treatment failure. ART prior to recruitment was not associated with better outcomes.

Conclusions
Mortality and treatment failure from cryptococcal meningitis following initiation of treatment with 800 mg oral fluconazole is unacceptably high. To improve outcomes, there is an urgent need for better therapeutic strategies and point-of-care diagnostics, allowing earlier diagnosis before development of neurological deficit.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: QV Pharmacology > Anti-Inflammatory Agents. Anti-Infective Agents. Antineoplastic Agents > QV 252 Antifungal agents. Antifungal antibiotics
WA Public Health > Health Problems of Special Population Groups > WA 395 Health in developing countries
WC Communicable Diseases > Virus Diseases > Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome. HIV Infections > WC 503 Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. HIV infections
WC Communicable Diseases > Virus Diseases > Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome. HIV Infections > WC 503.5 Complications
WL Nervous System > WL 200 Meninges. Blood-brain barrier
Faculty: Department: Clinical Sciences & International Health > Clinical Sciences Department
Digital Object Identifer (DOI): https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0067311
Depositing User: Annmarie Hand
Date Deposited: 03 Jan 2014 09:50
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2018 13:06
URI: http://archive.lstmed.ac.uk/id/eprint/3518

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