Randomized phase II trial of atovaquone with pyrimethamine or sulfadiazine for treatment of toxoplasmic encephalitis in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome: ACTG 237/ANRS 039 Study. AIDS Clinical Trials Group 237/Agence Nationale de Recherche sur le SIDA, Essai 039.Clin Infect Dis. 2002 May 01; 34(9):1243-50.CI
In this international, noncomparative, randomized phase II trial, we evaluated the effectiveness and tolerance of atovaquone suspension (1500 mg orally twice daily) plus either pyrimethamine (75 mg per day after a 200-mg loading dose) or sulfadiazine (1500 mg 4 times daily) as treatment for acute disease (for 6 weeks) and as maintenance therapy (for 42 weeks) for toxoplasmic encephalitis (TE) in patients infected with human immunodeficiency virus. Twenty-one (75%) of 28 patients receiving pyrimethamine (95% lower confidence interval [CI], 58%) and 9 (82%) of 11 patients receiving sulfadiazine (95% lower CI, 53%) responded to treatment for acute disease. Of 20 patients in the maintenance phase, only 1 experienced relapse. Eleven (28%) of 40 eligible patients discontinued treatment as a result of adverse events, 9 because of nausea and vomiting or intolerance of the taste of the atovaquone suspension. Although gastrointestinal side effects were frequent, atovaquone-containing regimens are otherwise well tolerated and safe and may be useful for patients intolerant of standard regimens for toxoplasmic encephalitis.