Administration of antiretroviral medication via enteral tubes

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Abstract

Purpose

Case reports and other published or manufacturer-provided data on the administration of antiretroviral agents through enteral feeding tubes are reviewed.

Summary

There is very limited published evidence to guide clinicians in the delivery of therapies for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection by feeding tubes, especially crushed tablets and capsule contents. A search of the primary literature (through February 2012) identified a total of nine articles describing the delivery of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) agents via gastrostomy (G), jejunostomy, and other feeding tubes; correspondence with pharmaceutical manufacturers yielded additional information. Most of the published evidence (from two prospective studies, one retrospective study, and six case reports) pertains to the treatment of HIV-infected children (33 of 40 cases). Although not a primary endpoint of any of the reviewed studies, viral suppression was documented in 29 of the 40 patients referenced in the reviewed articles. Manufacturer-provided information indicates that crushed darunavir tablets in suspension, as well as oral solutions of ritonavir and lopinavir–ritonavir, can be administered through G-tubes without significant loss of therapeutic efficacy.

Conclusion

Data regarding enteral feeding tube administration are available for 63% of commercially available oral HAART agents and are primarily limited to case reports specific to the pediatric population.

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