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Fluconazole should be administered with caution to patients with liver dysfunction. Fluconazole has been associated with rare cases of serious hepatic toxicity, including fatalities primarily in patients with serious underlying medical conditions . In cases of fluconazole-associated hepatotoxicity, no obvious relations hip to total daily dose, duration of therapy, sex, or age of the patient has been observed. Fluconazole hepatotoxicity has usually, but not always , been reversible on discontinuation of therapy. Patients who develop abnormal liver function tests during fluconazole therapy should be monitored for the development of more severe hepatic injury. Fluconazole should be discontinued if clinical signs and symptoms cons is tent with liver diseas e develop that may be attributable to fluconazole.
In rare cases, anaphylaxis has been reported.
Exfoliative skin disorders during treatment with fluconazole have been reported. Fatal outcomes have been reported in patients with serious underlying diseases. Patients with deep seated fungal infections who develop rashes during treatment with fluconazole should be monitored closely and the drug discontinued if lesions progress. Fluconazole should be discontinued in patients treated for superficial fungal infection who develop a rash that may be attributed to fluconazole.
Use In Pregnancy
There are no adequate and well-controlled studies of fluconazole in pregnant women. Available human data do not suggest an increased risk of congenital anomalies following a single maternal dose of 150 mg. A few published case reports describe a rare pattern of distinct congenital anomalies in infants exposed in utero to high dose maternal fluconazole (400 to 800 mg/day) during most or all of the first trimester. These reported anomalies are similar to those seen in animal studies. If this drug is used during pregnancy or if the patient becomes pregnant while taking the drug, the patient should be informed of the potential hazard to the fetus (see PRECAUTIONS, Pregnancy).
Some azoles, including fluconazole, have been associated with prolongation of the QT interval on the electrocardiogram. During postmarketing surveillance, there have been rare cases of QT prolongation and torsade de pointes in patients taking fluconazole. Most of these reports involved seriously ill patients with multiple confounding risk factors, such as structural heart disease, electrolyte abnormalities, and concomitant medications that may have been contributory.
Fluconazole should be administered with caution to patients with these potentially proarrhythmic conditions.
Concomitant use of fluconazole and erythromycin has the potential to increase the risk of cardiotoxicity (prolonged QT interval, torsade de pointes) and consequently sudden heart death. This combination should be avoided.
Fluconazole should be administered with caution to patients with renal dysfunction.
Fluconazole is a potent CYP2C9 inhibitor and a moderate CYP3A4 inhibitor. Fluconazole-treated patients who are concomitantly treated with drugs with a narrow therapeutic window metabolized through CYP2C9 and CYP3A4 should be monitored.
When driving vehicles or operating machines, it should be taken into account that occasionally dizziness or seizures may occur.
The convenience and efficacy of the single dose oral tablet of fluconazole regimen for the treatment of vaginal yeast infections should be weighed against the acceptability of a higher incidence of drugrelated adverse events with fluconazole (26%) versus intravaginal agents (16%) in U.S. comparative clinical studies (see ADVERSE REACTIONS and Clinical Studies).
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, And Impairment Of Fertility
Fluconazole showed no evidence of carcinogenic potential in mice and rats treated orally for 24 months at doses of 2.5, 5, or 10 mg/kg/day (approximately 2 to 7x the recommended human dose). Male rats treated with 5 and 10 mg/kg/day had an increased incidence of hepatocellular adenomas.
Fluconazole, with or without metabolic activation, was negative in tests for mutagenicity in 4 strains of S. typhimurium, and in the mouse lymphoma L5178Y system. Cytogenetic studies in vivo (murine bone marrow cells, following oral administration of fluconazole) and in vitro (human lymphocytes exposed to fluconazole at 1000 mcg/mL) showed no evidence of chromosomal mutations.
Fluconazole did not affect the fertility of male or female rats treated orally with daily doses of 5, 10, or 20 mg/kg or with parenteral doses of 5, 25, or 75 mg/kg, although the onset of parturition was slightly delayed at 20 mg/kg PO. In an intravenous perinatal study in rats at 5, 20, and 40 mg/kg, dystocia and prolongation of parturition were observed in a few dams at 20 mg/kg (approximately 5 to 15x the recommended human dose) and 40 mg/kg, but not at 5 mg/kg. The disturbances in parturition were reflected by a slight increase in the number of still born pups and decrease of neonatal survival at these dose levels. The effects on parturition in rats are consistent with the species specific estrogenlowering property produced by high doses of fluconazole. Such a hormone change has not been observed in women treated with fluconazole (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY).
Teratogenic Effects - Pregnancy Category C
Single 150 mg tablet use for Vaginal Candidiasis
There are no adequate and well-controlled studies of fluconazole in pregnant women. Available human data do not suggest an increased risk of congenital anomalies following a single maternal dose of 150 mg.
Pregnancy Category D
All Other Indications
A few published case reports describe a rare pattern of distinct congenital anomalies in infants exposed in utero to high dose maternal fluconazole (400 to 800 mg/day) during most or all of the first trimester. These reported anomalies are similar to those seen in animal studies. If this drug is used during pregnancy, or if the patient becomes pregnant while taking the drug, the patient should be informed of the potential hazard to the fetus (see WARNINGS, Use in Pregnancy).
Several published epidemiologic studies do not suggest an increased risk of congenital anomalies associated with low dose exposure to fluconazole in pregnancy (most subjects received a single oral dose of 150 mg). A few published case reports describe a distinctive and rare pattern of birth defects among infants whose mothers received high-dose (400 to 800 mg/day) fluconazole during most or all of the first trimester of pregnancy. The features seen in these infants include: brachycephaly, abnormal facies, abnormal calvarial development, cleft palate, femoral bowing, thin ribs and long bones, arthrogryposis, and congenital heart disease. These effects are similar to those seen in animal studies.
Fluconazole was administered orally to pregnant rabbits during organogenesis in two studies at doses of 5, 10, and 20 mg/kg and at 5, 25, and 75 mg/kg, respectively. Maternal weight gain was impaired at all dose levels (approximately 0.25 to 4 times the 400 mg clinical dose based on BSA), and abortions occurred at 75 mg/kg (approximately 4 times the 400 mg clinical dose based on BSA); no adverse fetal effects were observed.
In several studies in which pregnant rats received fluconazole orally during organogenesis, maternal weight gain was impaired and placental weights were increased at 25 mg/kg. There were no fetal effects at 5 or 10 mg/kg; increases in fetal anatomical variants (supernumerary ribs, renal pelvis dilation) and delays in ossification were observed at 25 and 50 mg/kg and higher doses. At doses ranging from 80 to 320 mg/kg (approximately 2 to 8 times the 400 mg clinical dose based on BSA), embryolethality in rats was increased and fetal abnormalities included wavy ribs, cleft palate, and abnormal cranio-facial ossification. These effects are consistent with the inhibition of estrogen synthesis in rats and may be a result of known effects of lowered estrogen on pregnancy, organogenesis, and parturition.
Fluconazole is secreted in human milk at concentrations similar to maternal plasma concentrations. Caution should be exercised when fluconazole is administered to a nursing woman.
The use of fluconazole in children with cryptococcal meningitis, Candida esophagitis, or systemic Candida infections is supported by the efficacy shown for these indications in adults and by the results from several small noncomparative pediatric clinical studies. In addition, pharmacokinetic studies in children (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY) have established a dose proportionality between children and adults (see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION).
In a noncomparative study of children with serious systemic fungal infections, most of which were candidemia, the effectiveness of fluconazole was similar to that reported for the treatment of candidemia in adults. Of 17 subjects with culture-confirmed candidemia, 11 of 14 (79%) with baseline symptoms (3 were asymptomatic) had a clinical cure; 13/15 (87%) of evaluable patients had a mycologic cure at the end of treatment but two of these patients relapsed at 10 and 18 days, respectively, following cessation of therapy.
The efficacy of fluconazole for the suppression of cryptococcal meningitis was successful in 4 of 5 children treated in a compassionate-use study of fluconazole for the treatment of life-threatening or serious mycosis. There is no information regarding the efficacy of fluconazole for primary treatment of cryptococcal meningitis in children.
The safety profile of fluconazole in children has been studied in 577 children ages 1 day to 17 years who received doses ranging from 1 to 15 mg/kg/day for 1 to 1,616 days (see ADVERSE REACTIONS).
Efficacy of fluconazole has not been established in infants less than 6 months of age (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY). A small number of patients (29) ranging in age from 1 day to 6 months have been treated safely with fluconazole.
In non-AIDS patients, side effects possibly related to fluconazole treatment were reported in fewer patients aged 65 and older (9%, n = 339) than for younger patients (14%, n = 2240). However, there was no consistent difference between the older and younger patients with respect to individual side effects. Of the most frequently reported ( > 1%) side effects, rash, vomiting, and diarrhea occurred in greater proportions of older patients. Similar proportions of older patients (2.4%) and younger patients (1.5%) discontinued fluconazole therapy because of side effects. In postmarketing experience, spontaneous reports of anemia and acute renal failure were more frequent among patients 65 years of age or older than in those between 12 and 65 years of age. Because of the voluntary nature of the reports and the natural increase in the incidence of anemia and renal failure in the elderly, it is however not possible to establish a causal relationship to drug exposure.
Controlled clinical trials of fluconazole did not include sufficient numbers of patients aged 65 and older to evaluate whether they respond differently from younger patients in each indication. Other reported clinical experience has not identified differences in responses between the elderly and younger patients.
Fluconazole is primarily cleared by renal excretion as unchanged drug. Because elderly patients are more likely to have decreased renal function, care should be taken to adjust dose based on creatinine clearance. It may be useful to monitor renal function (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY and DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION).This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
Last reviewed on RxList: 1/7/2016
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