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Seasonal Influenza A & Antiviral Tx for Patients

CDC Health Advisory; 2017 Dec 27; CDC

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a notice regarding increased influenza A(H3N2) activity and its clinical implications, a summary of influenza antiviral drug treatment recommendations, an update about approved treatment drugs and supply for the 2017-2018 season, and background information for patients about influenza treatment. Recommendations include:

  • CDC recommends antiviral medications for the treatment of influenza as an important adjunct to annual influenza vaccination.
  • All hospitalized, severely ill, and high-risk patients with suspected confirmed influenza should be treated with antivirals.
  • Antiviral treatment should be started as soon as possible after illness onset and should not be delayed even for a few hours to wait for the results of testing.
  • The most accurate influenza tests are molecular assays.
  • Neuraminidase inhibitors can benefit other individuals with influenza. 3 prescription neuraminidase inhibitor antiviral medications are recommended for use the US during the 2017-2018 season: iseltamivir (Tamiflu), zanamivir (Relenza), and peramivir (Rapivab).
  • Additional considerations for clinicians include bacterial infections and adverse events with antiviral use.

Citation:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Seasonal influenza A(H3N2) activity and antiviral treatment of patients with influenza. December 27, 2017. https://emergency.cdc.gov/han/han00409.asp. Accessed December 30, 2017.

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