Acyclovir halts progression of herpes zoster in immunocompromised patients

H. H. Balfour, B. Bean, O. L. Laskin, Richard F Ambinder, J. D. Meyers, J. C. Wade, J. A. Zaia, D. Aeppli, L. E. Kirk, A. C. Segreti, R. E. Keeney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We conducted a placebo-controlled, double-blind study of acyclovir therapy for acute herpes zoster in immunocompromised patients. Of the 94 patients enrolled in the study, 52 had localized skin lesions at entry, and 42 had disseminated cutaneous zoster. A one-week course of intravenous acyclovir (1500 mg per square meter of body-surface area per day) halted progression of zoster in both groups, as determined by development of progression of cutaneous dissemination, development of visceral zoster, or proportion of cases deemed treatment failures. Significantly fewer patients treated with acyclovir within the first 3 days after the onset of exanthem had complications of zoster, as compared with patients treated with placebo (P = 0.02 by Fisher's exact test), but acyclovir also stopped progression of zoster in patients treated after 3 days of rash (P = 0.05 by Fisher's exact test). Acyclovir recipients with disseminated cutaneous zoster had a significantly accelerated rate of clearance of virus from vesicles, as compared with placebo recipients (P = 0.05 by the Breslow test).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1448-1453
Number of pages6
JournalNew England Journal of Medicine
Volume308
Issue number24
StatePublished - 1983

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Acyclovir
Herpes Zoster
Immunocompromised Host
Skin
Placebos
Exanthema
Body Surface Area
Treatment Failure
Double-Blind Method
Viruses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Balfour, H. H., Bean, B., Laskin, O. L., Ambinder, R. F., Meyers, J. D., Wade, J. C., ... Keeney, R. E. (1983). Acyclovir halts progression of herpes zoster in immunocompromised patients. New England Journal of Medicine, 308(24), 1448-1453.

Acyclovir halts progression of herpes zoster in immunocompromised patients. / Balfour, H. H.; Bean, B.; Laskin, O. L.; Ambinder, Richard F; Meyers, J. D.; Wade, J. C.; Zaia, J. A.; Aeppli, D.; Kirk, L. E.; Segreti, A. C.; Keeney, R. E.

In: New England Journal of Medicine, Vol. 308, No. 24, 1983, p. 1448-1453.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Balfour, HH, Bean, B, Laskin, OL, Ambinder, RF, Meyers, JD, Wade, JC, Zaia, JA, Aeppli, D, Kirk, LE, Segreti, AC & Keeney, RE 1983, 'Acyclovir halts progression of herpes zoster in immunocompromised patients', New England Journal of Medicine, vol. 308, no. 24, pp. 1448-1453.
Balfour HH, Bean B, Laskin OL, Ambinder RF, Meyers JD, Wade JC et al. Acyclovir halts progression of herpes zoster in immunocompromised patients. New England Journal of Medicine. 1983;308(24):1448-1453.
Balfour, H. H. ; Bean, B. ; Laskin, O. L. ; Ambinder, Richard F ; Meyers, J. D. ; Wade, J. C. ; Zaia, J. A. ; Aeppli, D. ; Kirk, L. E. ; Segreti, A. C. ; Keeney, R. E. / Acyclovir halts progression of herpes zoster in immunocompromised patients. In: New England Journal of Medicine. 1983 ; Vol. 308, No. 24. pp. 1448-1453.
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