Echinocandin exposures in obese patients: A scoping review and clinical perspectives

Yazed S. Alsowaida, Ahmad Alamer, Abrar K. Thabit, Abdulaziz S. Almulhim, Muneerah M. Aleissa, Alireza Kalbasi, Khaled Eljaaly, Thamer A. Almangour, Brian L. Erstad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Purpose: Echinocandins are favored drugs for the treatment of fungal infections. There is growing evidence that obese patients treated with echinocandins have lower exposures due to pharmacokinetic (PK) alterations. We conducted a scoping review to characterize, evaluate, and summarize the available evidence on echinocandins exposures in obese patients. Summary: A comprehensive search of PubMed, Embase, and Cochrane Library for studies on echinocandins published from database inception to October 28, 2022, was conducted using PRISMA-ScR methodology. A total of 25 studies comprising more than 3,174 subjects (8 micafungin studies, 7 caspofungin studies, 9 anidulafungin studies, and 1 rezafungin study) were included in this review. Seventeen studies reported lower echinocandins exposures in overweight and obese individuals compared with normal-weight individuals; the authors of these studies recommended dose adjustments. Conversely, 8 studies did not find significant differences in echinocandin exposure among subjects in varying body weight categories. Clinicians may consider dose adjustments of echinocandins in obese patients; however, there is limited evidence on the ideal dose adjustment strategy to overcome the low echinocandin exposures in obese patients. Conclusion: This scoping review shed light on a growing body of evidence indicating that obese patients have lower echinocandin exposures relative to targeted PK indices, which may lead to negative therapeutic implications. Currently, a lack of high-quality evidence impedes reaching consensus on recommendations for echinocandin dosing adjustment in obese patients. Future research evaluating the optimal echinocandin dosing strategy for obese patients is needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)503-517
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican Journal of Health-System Pharmacy
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 15 2023


  • anidulafungin
  • caspofungin
  • echinocandins
  • micafungin
  • obesity
  • rezafungin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Pharmacy
  • Pharmacology


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