Ann Pharmacother. 2020 Oct 5:1060028020963616. doi: 10.1177/1060028020963616. Online ahead of print.
OBJECTIVE: To review the pharmacology, clinical trial data, and clinical implications for the intravenous formulation of zanamivir.
DATA SOURCES: MEDLINE, PubMed, EMBASE, and Google Scholar were searched during November 2019 to July 2020. Search terms zanamivir and neuraminidase inhibitor were used.
STUDY SELECTION AND DATA EXTRACTION: All human trials and major reports from compassionate use programs with the intravenous zanamivir (IVZ) formulation were assessed and reviewed here.
DATA SYNTHESIS: IVZ was found to be similar but not superior to oral oseltamivir in hospitalized patients when studied in populations with very low baseline oseltamivir resistance. IVZ provides an effective alternative for critically ill patients when oral antiviral therapy is not preferred or when oseltamivir resistance is increased.
RELEVANCE TO PATIENT CARE AND CLINICAL PRACTICE: IVZ was recently authorized for use by the European Medicines Agency, and it is eligible for consideration in emergency use protocols and US stockpile inclusion. It will be of particular interest in critically ill patients especially during influenza seasons with appreciable oseltamivir and peramivir resistance.
CONCLUSIONS: The available information suggests that the intravenous formulation of zanamivir offers a viable alternative treatment for critically ill patients with influenza, especially when resistance to other agents is present.