Dosing accuracy of artesunate and amodiaquine as treatment for falciparum malaria in Casamance, Senegal.


Objectives: Several products of artesunate plus amodiaquine (AS + AQ) are being deployed in malaria-endemic countries for treating uncomplicated falciparum malaria but dosing accuracy and consequential effects on efficacy and tolerability have not been examined. Methods: Patients with parasitologically confirmed, uncomplicated falciparum malaria were treated and followed by research teams or local health centre staff in Casamance, Senegal. AS + AQ was given as: (i) loose combination (AS 50 mg, AQ 200 mg), dosed on body weight, or (ii) co-blistered product (AS 50 mg, AQ 153 mg) dosed by weight or age. Target doses were: (i) AS 4 (2–10) mg/kg/day and (ii) AQ 10 (7.5–15) mg/kg/day. Patients receiving therapeutic doses defined dosing accuracy. Treatment-emergent signs and symptoms (TESS) were recorded. Results: A total of 3277 patients were treated with loose (n = 1972, weight-dosed) or co-blistered (n = 1305, 962 age-dosed, 343 weight-dosed) AS + AQ by the research team (n = 966) or clinic staff (n = 2311). AS was dosed correctly in >99% with all regimens. Loose AQ by weight was 98% correct. The co-blister AQ overdosed 18% of patients when dosed by age and underdosed 13% by weight. Low weight was an independent risk factor for overdosing. The co-blister had significantly more TESS than the loose product [117/1305 (9%) vs. 41/1972 (2%), relative risk = 4.3 (95% CI: 3.0–6.1, P


Tropical Medicine and International Health (2009) 14 (1) 79-87 [doi:10.1111/j.1365-3156.2008.02190.x]

Published 1 January 2009