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Adverse systemic reactions to treatment of onchocerciasis with ivermectin at normal and high doses given annually or three-monthly.

Author(s): Kamgno J, Gardon J, Gardon-Wendel N, Demanga-Ngangue, Duke BO, Boussinesq M

Affiliation(s): Laboratoire mixte IRD-CPC d'Epidemiologie et de Sante publique, Centre Pasteur du Cameroun, B.P. 1274, Yaounde, Cameroon. kamgna@pasteur.cm

Publication date & source: 2004-08, Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg., 98(8):496-504.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Multicenter Study; Randomized Controlled Trial

In Cameroon, a 3-year randomized, double-blind controlled trial was conducted to determine if ivermectin, given at 3-monthly intervals and/or at high doses (800 microg/kg), had a greater effect on adult Onchocerca volvulus than standard annual doses of 150 microg/kg. Adverse reactions were recorded and analysed in a logistic regression model with random effects to assess the influence of the dose and rhythm of treatment on their occurrence. After the first dose, 3-monthly treatment was associated with a clearly reduced risk of reactions, especially oedematous swellings, pruritus and back-pain. Oedematous swellings and subjective ocular troubles were found to be associated with high doses of ivermectin. These results reinforce former parasitological conclusions that it would be desirable to evaluate the feasibility and effects on transmission of large-scale 3-monthly treatments with standard doses of ivermectin for onchocerciasis control. Owing to the unexpected ocular reactions, the use of high doses to counteract any future resistance of O. volvulus to ivermectin should be considered with caution.

Page last updated: 2006-01-31

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