Antivirals for Treatment of Influenza A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Observational Studies

McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
Annals of internal medicine (Impact Factor: 16.1). 02/2012; 156(7):512-24. DOI: 10.1059/0003-4819-156-7-201204030-00411
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Systematic reviews of randomized, controlled trials in patients with influenza suggest a lack of evidence about the effects of antiviral therapy on several patient-important outcomes of influenza.
To systematically review observational studies for benefits and harms of oseltamivir, zanamivir, amantadine, or rimantadine in the treatment of influenza.
MEDLINE, EMBASE, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, CINAHL, SIGLE, the Chinese Biomedical Literature Database, Panteleimon, and LILACS up to November 2010; contact with pharmaceutical companies; and reference lists.
Observational studies in any language that compared single antiviral therapy with no therapy or other antiviral therapy, or that had no comparator, for influenza or influenza-like illness.
Two independent investigators extracted data. Confidence in the estimates of the obtained effects (quality of evidence) was assessed by using the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation approach.
74 studies fulfilled the inclusion criteria. Meta-analyses of the few studies providing effects with adjustment for confounders suggest that, in high-risk populations, oral oseltamivir may reduce mortality (odds ratio, 0.23 [95% CI, 0.13 to 0.43]; low-quality evidence), hospitalization (odds ratio, 0.75 [CI, 0.66 to 0.89]; low-quality evidence), and duration of symptoms (33 hours [CI, 21 to 45 hours]; very low-quality evidence) compared with no treatment. Earlier treatment with oseltamivir was generally associated with better outcomes. Inhaled zanamivir may lead to shorter symptom duration (23 hours [CI, 17 to 28 hours]; moderate-quality evidence) and fewer hospitalizations (odds ratio, 0.66 [CI, 0.37 to 1.18]) but more complications than no treatment. Direct comparison of oral oseltamivir and inhaled zanamivir suggests no important differences in key outcomes. Data from 1 study suggest that oral amantadine may reduce mortality and pneumonia associated with influenza A. No included study evaluated rimantadine.
Mortality was assessed in high-risk patients, and generalizability is limited. The overall body of evidence is limited by risk for confounding and selection, reporting, and publication bias.
Therapy with oral oseltamivir and inhaled zanamivir may provide a net benefit over no treatment of influenza. However, as with the randomized trials, the confidence in the estimates of the effects for decision making is low to very low. PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCES: World Health Organization and McMaster University.


Available from: Signe Agnes Flottorp, Oct 14, 2014
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Oseltamivir (Tamiflu), a neuraminidase inhibitor, was approved for seasonal flu by US Food and Drug Administration in 1999. A number of randomized controlled trials, systematic reviews, and meta-analysis emphasized a favorable efficacy and safety profile. Majority of them were funded by Roche, which also first marketed and promoted this drug. In 2005 and 2009, the looming fear of pandemic flu led to recommendation by prominent regulatory bodies such as World Health Organization (WHO), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, European Medicines Agency and others for its use in treatment and prophylaxis of influenza, and it's stockpiling as a measure to tide over the crisis. Serious Adverse Events, especially neuropsychiatric events associated with Tamiflu started getting reported leading to a cascade of questions on clinical utility of this drug. A recent Cochrane review and related articles have questioned the risk-benefit ratio of the drug, besides raising doubts about the regulatory decision of approving it. The recommendations for stockpiling the said drug as given by various international organizations viz WHO have also been put to scrutiny. Although many reviewers have labeled the Tamiflu saga as a "costly mistake," the episode leaves us with some important lessons. This article takes a comprehensive relook on the subject, and we proceed to suggest some ways and means to avoid a similar situation in the future.
    Indian Journal of Pharmacology 01/2015; 47(1):11-6. DOI:10.4103/0253-7613.150308 · 0.68 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To describe antiviral use among older, hospitalized adults during six influenza seasons (2006-2012) in Davidson County, Tennessee, USA. Among adults ≥50 years old hospitalized with symptoms of respiratory illness or non-localizing fever, we collected information on provider-initiated influenza testing and nasal/throat swabs for influenza by RT-PCR in a research laboratory, and calculated the proportion treated with antivirals. We enrolled 1753 adults hospitalized with acute respiratory illness. Only 26% (457/1753) of enrolled patients had provider-initiated influenza testing. Thirty-eight patients had a positive clinical laboratory test, representing 2.2% of total patients and 8.3% of tested patients. Among the 38 subjects with clinical laboratory-confirmed influenza, 26.3% received antivirals compared to only 4.5% of those with negative clinical influenza tests and 0.7% of those not tested (p<0.001). There were 125 (7.1%) patients who tested positive for influenza in the research laboratory. Of those with research laboratory-confirmed influenza, 0.9%, 2.7%, and 2.8% received antivirals (p=.046) during pre-pandemic, pandemic, and post-pandemic influenza seasons, respectively. Both research laboratory-confirmed influenza (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] 3.04 95%CI 1.26-7.35) and clinical laboratory-confirmed influenza (AOR 3.05, 95%CI 1.07-8.71) were independently associated with antiviral treatment. Severity of disease, presence of a high-risk condition, and symptom duration were not associated with antiviral use. In urban Tennessee, antiviral use was low in patients recognized to have influenza by the provider as well as those unrecognized to have influenza. The use of antivirals remained low despite recommendations to treat all hospitalized patients with confirmed or suspected influenza.
    PLoS ONE 03/2015; 10(3):e0121952. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0121952 · 3.53 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The 2009 pandemic influenza A virus outbreak led to the systematic use of the neuraminidase (NA) inhibitor oseltamivir (OST). Consequently, OST-resistant strains, carrying the mutation H275Y, emerged in the years after the pandemics, with a prevalence of 1-2%. Currently, OST-resistant strains have been found in community settings, in un- treated individuals. To spread in community settings, H275Y mutants must contain additional mutations, collectively called permissive mutations. We display the permissive mutations in NA of OST-resistant A(H1N1)pdm09 virus found in Brazilian community settings. The NAs from 2013 are phylogenetically distinct from those of 2012, indicating a ten- dency of positive selection of NAs with better fitness. Some previously predicted permissive mutations, such as V241I and N369K, found in different countries, were also detected in Brazil. Importantly, the change D344N, also predicted to compensate loss of fitness imposed by H275Y mutation, was found in Brazil, but not in other countries in 2013. Our results reinforce the notion that OST-resistant A(H1N1)pdm09 strains with compensatory mutations may arise in an independent fashion, with samples being identified in different states of Brazil and in different countries. Systematic circulation of these viral strains may jeopardise the use of the first line of anti-inf luenza drugs in the future.
    Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz 02/2015; 110(1). DOI:10.1590/0074-02760140330 · 1.57 Impact Factor