Mould-active compared with fluconazole prophylaxis to prevent invasive fungal diseases in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy or haematopoietic stem-cell transplantation: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials
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BACKGROUND: Objectives were to compare systemic mould-active vs fluconazole prophylaxis in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy or haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). METHODS: We searched OVID MEDLINE and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (1948-August 2011) and EMBASE (1980-August 2011). Randomised controlled trials of mould-active vs fluconazole prophylaxis in cancer or HSCT patients were included. Primary outcome was proven/probable invasive fungal infections (IFI). Analysis was completed by computing relative risks (RRs) using a random-effects model and Mantel-Haenszel method. RESULTS: From 984 reviewed articles, 20 were included in this review. Mould-active compared with fluconazole prophylaxis significantly reduced the number of proven/probable IFI (RR 0.71, 95% CI 0.52 to 0.98; P=0.03). Mould-active prophylaxis also decreased the risk of invasive aspergillosis (IA; RR 0.53, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.37-0.75; P=0.0004) and IFI-related mortality (RR 0.67, 95% CI 0.47-0.96; P=0.03) but is also associated with an increased risk of adverse events (AEs) leading to antifungal discontinuation (RR 1.95, 95% CI 1.24-3.07; P=0.004). There was no decrease in overall mortality (RR 1.0; 95% CI 0.88-1.13; P=0.96). CONCLUSION: Mould-active compared with fluconazole prophylaxis significantly reduces proven/probable IFI, IA, and IFI-related mortality in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy or HSCT, but increases AE and does not affect overall mortality. (PROSPERO Registration: CRD420111174).