Pathology (East Africa)
Approximately one million children die from malaria each year. A recently approved artemisinin-based tablet, Coartem (co-artemether), comprising artemether 120 mg plus lumefantrine 20 mg, given in four doses, provides effective antimalarial treatment for children in many sub-Saharan countries. However, this regimen is considered insufficient for non-immune infants and in areas where multidrug-resistant Plasmodium falciparum predominates. This open-label study assessed the efficacy and safety of co-artemether administered to 310 African children weighing 5-25 kg, with acute, uncomplicated falciparum malaria. Six doses of co-artemether were given over 3 days, with follow-up at 7, 14 and 28 days. Treatment rapidly cleared parasitemia and fever. The overall 28-day cure rate was 86.5%, and 93.9% when corrected by PCR for reinfection. Cure rates at 7 and 14 days exceeded 97.0% (uncorrected) and, on day 28, were similar in infants (5-kg) previously exposed to malaria infection (partially immune: 88.6% uncorrected; 93.3% corrected), and in those who were non-immune (82.5% uncorrected; 95.0% corrected). Adverse events were mostly mild. There was no electrocardiographic evidence of cardiotoxicity. The co-artemether six-dose regimen, treating acute uncomplicated falciparum malaria in African children, achieved rapid parasite clearance and a high cure rate. Treatment was generally safe and well tolerated. © 2004 Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Ibarra de Palacios, P.
(2005). Efficacy and safety of artemether-lumefantrine (Coartem®) tablets (six-dose regimen) in African infants and children with acute, uncomplicated falciparum malaria. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 99(6), 459-467.
Available at: http://ecommons.aku.edu/eastafrica_fhs_mc_pathol/74