Oseltamivir: A New Option for the Management of Influenza in Children

Marcia L. Buck, Pharm.D., FCCP

Pediatr Pharm. 2001;7(2) 

In This Article

Introduction

It is estimated that influenza causes 18-20 million cases of respiratory illness each year in the United States. The majority of these infections, approximately 13 to 16 million, occur in children and adolescents.[1] Infants and children with underlying respiratory and cardiovascular disease are at greatest risk from complications related to influenza infection.[2,3] Until recently, there were few therapies to offer patients with influenza. Amantadine and rimantidine were effective only against influenza A and frequently caused adverse effects. In 1999, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the use of zanamivir and oseltamivir, two drugs in a new therapeutic class called neuraminidase inhibitors, for influenza infection. In their first two seasons of use, these agents have had a substantial impact on the management of influenza in adults.

Oseltamivir was initially approved by the FDA for the prevention and treatment of influenza in adults and children greater than 13 years of age. In December 2000, oseltamivir gained additional FDA approval for treatment of influenza in children greater than 1 year of age.[4,5] Zanamivir is currently under investigation in children.[6] This issue of Pediatric Pharmacotherapy will review the efficacy of oseltamivir in adults and children, describe its pharmacokinetics and adverse effects, and provide pediatric dosing recommendations.

Comments

3090D553-9492-4563-8681-AD288FA52ACE
Comments on Medscape are moderated and should be professional in tone and on topic. You must declare any conflicts of interest related to your comments and responses. Please see our Commenting Guide for further information. We reserve the right to remove posts at our sole discretion.
Post as:

processing....