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News Roundup [abridged Versions Appear In The Paper Journal]

Review says oseltamivir and zanamivir should be kept for epidemics of flu

BMJ 2006; 332 doi: (Published 26 January 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;332:196
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. London

    The neuraminidase inhibitors oseltamivir (Tamiflu) and zanamivir (Relenza) may be effective in serious epidemic or pandemic influenza but must be used together with infection control procedures, says a Cochrane review published last week. The review said that these drugs should not be used for seasonal flu but should be kept for serious epidemics and that other antivirals should not be used at all for flu.

    The review, which was published online ahead of print publication on 19 January in the Lancet (, doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(06)67970-1), analysed data from randomised controlled trials of both classes of antivirals currently used to prevent or treat flu: the M2 ion channel inhibitors, amantadine and rimantadine, and two of the newer neuraminidase inhibitors, zanamivir and …

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