Evaluation of the antiviral response to zanamivir administered intravenously for treatment of critically ill patients with pandemic influenza A (H1N1) infection
A retrospective nationwide study on the use of intravenous (IV) zanamivir in patients receiving intensive care who were pretreated with oseltamivir in the Netherlands was performed. In 6 of 13 patients with a sustained reduction of the viral load, the median time to start IV zanamivir was 9 days (range, 4-11 days) compared with 14 days (range, 6-21 days) in 7 patients without viral load reduction (P = .052). Viral load response did not influence mortality. We conclude that IV zanamivir as late add-on therapy has limited effectiveness. The effect of an immediate start with IV zanamivir monotherapy or in combination with other drugs need to be evaluated.