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First report of recurrent pneumonia and squamous cell carcinoma: case report

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    An event is serious (FDA MedWatch definition) when the patient outcome is:

    • death

    • life-threatening

    • hospitalisation

    • disability

    • congenital anomaly

    • requires intervention to prevent permanent impairment or damage

    First published case report

    A 46-year-old man with a history of asthma and atopic dermatitis, developed recurrent pneumonia and squamous cell skin carcinoma during treatment with mepolizumab for hypereosinophilic syndrome.

    The man started a trial of mepolizumab [route and dose not stated] in September 2005, concomitantly with systemic steroids. His condition improved after three monthly doses. Prednisone was withdrawn. However, due to multiple asthma exacerbations and a rise of his eosinophil count to 3000, he restarted prednisone in 2007. He resumed mepolizumab in 2008. Following improvement of his disease symptoms prednisone was discontinued. He developed pneumonia in his left lower lobe in December 2008, and in his right upper lobe 2 months later. His sputum was positive for Haemophilus influenza. He developed cough, fever and pneumonia with growth of Streptococcus pneumoniae during the following month. In 2009, he had three additional pneumonia episodes which resolved with antibiotics. Multiple sputum cultures grew Mycobacterium avium. He also developed eight squamous cell carcinomas on his skin throughout 2009. Mepolizumab was withdrawn, due to concerns of recurrent infection and skin cancer.

    FormalPara COMMENT

    Editorial Comment: A search of AdisBase, Medline and Embase did not reveal any previous case reports of pneumonia or squamous cell carcinoma associated with mepolizumab. The WHO ADR database contained two reports of pneumonia and none of squamous cell carcinoma associated with mepolizumab.

    FormalPara Key words

    Mepolizumab - Pneumonia - adverse reactions - drug-induced - Squamous-cell-cancer - Research-and-development


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      Shariat C, Fadel DA, Schattner G.Recurrent Pneumonias and Squamous Cell Carcinomas of the Skin During Treatment With Mepolizumab in a Patient With Hypereosinophilic Syndrome. 76th Annual Meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians: Chest 2010: 30 Oct 2010. Available from: URL: http://chestjournal.chestpubs.org - USA

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    Mepolizumab. React. Wkly. 1329, 25 (2010). https://doi.org/10.2165/00128415-201013290-00082

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    • Asthma
    • Influenza
    • Squamous Cell Carcinoma
    • Prednisone
    • Atopic Dermatitis