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▼Oseltamivir for influenza

Abstract

▼Oseltamivir (pronounced os-el-ta-mi-veer; Tamiflu-Roche), an oral anti-influenza drug that inhibits influenza virus neuraminidase, is now available in the UK. It has recently been licensed throughout the EU for use, when influenza is circulating in the community, in the treatment of patients with early influenza-like symptoms, and for prophylaxis in people who have had close contact with someone with influenza.1,2 Oseltamivir is the second neuraminidase inhibitor to be licensed in the UK, the other being zanamivir (Relenza - GlaxoSmithKline), which is taken by inhalation and licensed only for treatment. Previously, we concluded that there was insufficient evidence that treatment with zanamivir prevented serious complications in people most at risk from influenza to recommend its use.3,4 Here we review the efficacy and safety of oseltamivir and discuss its role in the management of influenza.

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