Systemic Antifungals to Treat Onychomycosis in Children: A Systematic Review

Authors

  • Aditya K Gupta M.D., Ph.D., F.R.C.P.(C), F.A.A.D.,

    Corresponding author
    1. Clinical Research, Mediprobe Research Inc, London, Ontario, Canada
    • Division of Dermatology, Department of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Maryse Paquet Ph.D.

    1. Clinical Research, Mediprobe Research Inc, London, Ontario, Canada
    Search for more papers by this author

Address correspondence to Aditya K. Gupta, M.D., Ph.D., F.R.C.P.(C), F.A.A.D., 645 Windermere Road, London, Ontario, Canada N5X 2P1, or e-mail: agupta@execulink.com.

Abstract

Because of the low prevalence of onychomycosis in children, little is known about the efficacy and safety of systemic antifungals in this population. PubMed and Embase databases and the references of related publications were searched in March 2012 for clinical trials (CTs), retrospective analyses (RAs), and case reports (CRs) on the use of systemic antifungals for onychomycosis in children (<18 years). Twenty-six studies (5 CTs, 3 RAs, and 18 CRs) were published between 1976 and 2011. Most of these studies reported the use of systemic terbinafine and itraconazole for the treatment of onychomycosis in children. Therapy with systemic antifungals alone in children ages 1 to 17 years resulted in a complete cure rate of 70.8% (= 151), whereas combined systemic and topical antifungal therapy in one infant and 19 children age 8 and older resulted in a complete cure rate of 80.0% (= 20). The efficacy and safety profiles of terbinafine, itraconazole, griseofulvin, and fluconazole in children were similar to those previously reported for adults. In conclusion, based on the little information available on onychomycosis in children, systemic antifungal therapies in children are safe and cure rates are similar to the rates achieved in adults.

Ancillary