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Tamiflu-What we Know About its Ups and Downs

Tamiflu-What we Know About its Ups and Downs

Josef D. Jarhult1, 2

1Section for Infectious Diseases, Department of Medical Sciences, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden; 2Zoonosis Science Center, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Microbiology, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.

josef.jarhult@medsci.uu.se

ABSTRACT

The pros and cons of the anti-influenza drug oseltamivir (Tamiflu®) have been intensely debated lately. This article aims to sum up what is known about positive and negative effects of the drug. The available data suggests that oseltamivir treatment of uncomplicated influenza in otherwise healthy patients shortens influenza symptoms with approximately 24 hours, and increases nausea and vomiting by 3-5%. Whether oseltamivir treatment has an effect on the frequency of influenza complications or not remains controversial. Oseltamivir is still standard as prophylaxis, treatment of severely ill patients and patients with risk factors for severe influenza disease as well as an important part of pandemic preparedness plans. Resistance development is a potential problem both in treated humans and in the environment. The use of oseltamivir for treatment of uncomplicated influenza in otherwise healthy patients should be questioned.

 

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Hosts and Viruses

June

Vol.6, Iss.3, Pages 42-84

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