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Novel, broad-specrum antimycotic agents: the role of echinocandins today

Keywords: antifungal drugs , echinocandins , caspofungin , anidulafungin , micafungin , indications , clinical studies

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Abstract:

The echinocandins show comparable efficacy in the treatment of candidemia and invasive candidiasis. Caspofungin and micafungin appear to be similarly efficacious in salvage therapy in aspergillosis; anidulafungin has excellent in vitro activity against Aspergillus species but as yet there are no sufficient clinical data for anidulafungin in this disease state. Each drug has minor advantages and disadvantages compared to the others of the same classe; however, there are large differences in the approved indications for the different drugs. The formulary selection process should consider the direct and indirect costs of the single agents; the characteristics of the patient population at risk for invasive mycosis, such as frequent use of interacting drugs and the burden of monitoring plasma drug levels of drugs; and the implications of using products for indications which have not been still approved (off-label indications).

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