Original Article

Annals of Hematology

, Volume 92, Issue 6, pp 831-839

First online:

Second- versus first-generation azoles for antifungal prophylaxis in hematology patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis

  • Baohong PingAffiliated withBaohong Ping, Department of Huiqiao, Nanfang Hospital Email author 
  • , Yangmin ZhuAffiliated withBaohong Ping, Department of Huiqiao, Nanfang Hospital
  • , Ya GaoAffiliated withBaohong Ping, Department of Huiqiao, Nanfang Hospital
  • , Chunyan YueAffiliated withBaohong Ping, Department of Huiqiao, Nanfang Hospital
  • , Bin WuAffiliated withBaohong Ping, Department of Huiqiao, Nanfang Hospital

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Abstract

Second-generation azoles may be more effective than first-generation azoles in the prevention of fungal infections in hematology patients. We performed a systematic review with meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials comparing second- with first-generation azoles in hematology patients with respect to proven or probable invasive fungal infections, invasive aspergillosis, receipt of empirical antifungal therapy, overall mortality, and withdrawal from the studies due to the development of adverse effects. We searched the Medline, Embase, and Cochrane Registry of Controlled Trials electronic databases as well as conference proceedings from 2002 to 2012 for randomized controlled trials comparing second-generation azoles (voriconazole, posaconazole) versus first-generation azoles (fluconazole, itraconazole). Treatment effect measures for all outcomes were expressed as odds ratio with 95 % confidence interval. Meta-analysis was performed using Review Manager, version 5.1. Data from four randomized clinical trials representing a large population of patients demonstrated that antifungal prophylaxis with second-generation azoles reduces proven or probable invasive fungal infections, invasive aspergillosis, and receipt of empirical antifungal therapy in high-risk hematology patients, while there were no differences between second- and first-generation azoles with regard to overall mortality and patients or withdrawal from the studies due to the development of adverse effects. In conclusion, antifungal prophylaxis with second-generation azoles can significantly reduce the incidence of invasive fungal infections and invasive aspergillosis but with no risk of an increase in adverse events.

Keywords

Voriconazole Posaconazole Antifungal prophylaxis Hematology