Valganciclovir in the treatment of cytomegalovirus retinitis in HIV-infected patients
A Jayaprakash Patil1,2,3, Ashish Sharma1,4, M Cristina Kenney1, Baruch D Kuppermann1
1Department of Ophthalmology, Gavin S Herbert Eye Institute, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA, USA; 2Department of Ophthalmology, Summa Health System, Akron, OH, USA; 3Northeastern Ohio Universities Colleges of Medicine and Pharmacy, Rootstown, OH, USA; 4Department of Ophthalmology, Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, Miami, FL, USA
Abstract: Oral valganciclovir is a new and highly efficacious alternative to the chronic administration of ganciclovir in the treatment of cytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis in HIV-infected patients. In addition to its excellent bioavailability and favorable pharmacokinetic profile, valganciclovir has also proved cost effective and is the most widely used drug in the armamentarium for the treatment of CMV retinitis. Valganciclovir is a prodrug of ganciclovir, the erstwhile commonly used therapy. In March 2001, the US Food and Drug Administration approved valganciclovir for the induction and maintenance treatment of CMV disease, including CMV retinitis. Valganciclvoir has compared favorably with both oral and intravenous treatments for induction and maintenance therapy with ganciclovir. The reduced pill burden and the ease of oral administration has helped avoid the risks associated with intravenous therapy. The most serious adverse event is neutropenia, which makes the patient susceptible to infections. In the current review, we have compiled all the available evidence-based information on valganciclovir.
Keywords: CMV retinitis, ganciclovir, valganciclovir
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