Fluconazole Can Prevent Oral Thrush in HIV-Positive Individuals, Report Shows
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality on Tuesday released a report summary that states the antifungal medication fluconazole is effective in preventing the development of oral candidiasis, a "common" mouth infection in HIV/AIDS patients that is also known as thrush, an AHRQ release states. The report, compiled by AHRQ's Evidence-based Practice Center of the Research Triangle Institute at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, focused on the "dental management" of HIV-positive patients. The report supported the continued use of fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, nystatin or clotrimazole to treat existing cases of thrush, but determined that only fluconazole is effective for prophylaxis of recurrent cases. The report also examined complications of "invasive oral procedure" in HIV-positive patients and the use of oral conditions as indicators of progression to a "state of severe immune suppression." Researchers found "very limited evidence" of risks associated with invasive oral procedures, and four small studies showed "few postoperative complications" from tooth extractions. The report also concluded that thrush and Kaposi's sarcoma "may be reasonable indicators" of disease progression in HIV-positive patients, while oral ulcers and leukoplakia (a pre-cancerous mouth condition) are not. The report was a collaborative effort by the AHRQ and the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (AHRQ release, 4/24).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.