purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess the tolerance and efficacy of itraconazole in the treatment of coccidioidomycosis. patients and methods: Fifty-one patients with nonmeningeal coccidioidomycosis were considered for treatment with itraconazole. Forty-nine patients who met study criteria were treated with itraconazole given orally in doses of 100 to 400 mg/day for periods up to 39 months. Of these patients, 12 had osteoarticular disease, 23 had chronic pulmonary disease, and 14 had skin or soft tissue disease. Clinical response was evaluated using a scoring system accounting for lesion number and size, symptoms, culture, and serologic titer. Remission was defined as reduction of the pretreatment score by 50% or more. results: Patients with osteoarticular, chronic pulmonary, and soft tissue disease improved at similar rates. Because two patients had no scoring assessment for efficacy, they were considered inassessable for efficacy. Forty-seven patients are evaluable. Of these patients, 44 have completed therapy, and three are still receiving itraconazole. Of the 44 patients no longer receiving therapy, 25 (57%) achieved remission. Of the 25 patients achieving remission, four later experienced a relapse. Therapy failed in 19 patients (43%). Of these cases, 16 (36%) were clinical failures and three (7%) developed drug intolerance that precluded continuation of treatment. Evaluation of culture conversions was of limited value in the osteoarticular patients, fewer than half of whom had follow-up biopsies. However, culture conversions were a useful index of response in patients with chronic pulmonary disease. During the course of treatment, serologic titers declined in the two groups with extrapulmonary disease, but not in patients with pulmonary coccidioidomycosis. Possible toxicities were generally mild. conclusion: Itraconazole appears efficacious and very well tolerated in patients with coccidioidomycosis.
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