Prevention of opportunistic infections in immunosuppressed patients in the tropical top end of the Northern Territory.
Davis JS., Currie BJ., Fisher DA., Huffam SE., Anstey NM., Price RN., Krause VL., Zweck N., Lawton PD., Snelling PL., Selva-Nayagam S.
The population of the Top End of the Northern Territory has a high incidence of several infections of particular significance in the immunosuppressed. The following protocol for evaluation and treatment of patients prior to immunosuppression was developed in order to reduce the incidence of serious opportunistic infections. The infections discussed are Strongyloides stercoralis, tuberculosis, scabies, chronic hepatitis B, melioidosis and other bacterial infections. We recommend that all patients planned to receive more than 0.5 mg/kg/day of prednisolone for >14 days, or any more potent immunosuppressive drug, be evaluated and treated according to this protocol. Details of the rationale, evidence base, and proposed investigations and therapy for such patients are discussed.