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News

Rapid infliximab infusions are safe

A study published ahead of print in the Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics investigates the risk of infusion reactions associated with infliximab therapy for inflammatory conditions.

News image

Infliximab is typically administered intravenously via 2- to 3-hour duration infusions.

Infusions are time-consuming and costly.

Shorter duration infusions are administered at some centers.

Limited safety data are available on shorter duration infusions.

Dr Adler and colleagues from Michigan, USA determined the risk of infusion reaction associated with standard 2- to 3-hour infusions vs. rapid infusions in patients receiving infliximab therapy for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), rheumatoid arthritis, spondylarthopathy and psoriatic disease.

MEDLINE, Embase, and Web of Science were searched.

Inclusion required human subjects, documentation of number of standard and rapid infliximab infusions and number of incident infusion reactions.

7 studies limited to IBD demonstrated decreased risk of reaction
Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics

Studies of overlapping populations were excluded.

The team reported that 3 reviewers independently extracted data, and study quality was assessed.

The research team identified 10 studies comprising 13 147 standard 2- to 3-hours, and 8497 at 1-hour or less of infliximab infusions.

The team identified 9 studies that reported the risk of infusion reaction in standard vs. 1-hour infusions, demonstrating decreased relative risk of infusion reaction with 1-hour vs. standard infusions.

The researchers found that 7 studies limited to IBD also demonstrated decreased risk of reaction.

Other comparisons demonstrated no difference in relative risk of reaction, including concomitant medication use or analysis limited to high and medium quality studies.

Dr Adler's team commented, "Rapid infliximab infusions of 1-hour or less duration are not associated with increased risk of infusion reaction when compared to standard 2- to 3-hours infusions in selected patients who previously tolerated 3 to 4 standard infusions."

"One-hour infusions will conserve health care resources and may lead to improved adherence and quality of life in patients receiving infliximab."

Aliment Pharmacol Ther 2013: 38(3): DOI: 10.1111/apt.12389
03 July 2013

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