On November 15, 2018, Fexinidazole Winthrop received a positive opinion from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) (under Article 58) for treatment of first-stage (hemolymphatic) and second-stage (meningoencephalitic) human African trypanosomiasis caused by Trypanosoma gambiense (gHAT) in adults and children 6 years and older and weighing 20 or more kg. This is the first oral regimen for gHAT that is effective in treating both disease stages. Although fexinidazole has potential to simplify current therapies, it does not entirely eliminate the need for disease staging by lumbar puncture because patients with severe stage 2 disease (CSF WBC [cerebrospinal fluid white blood cells] greater than 100 cells/µL) should only be treated with fexinidazole if no other suitable treatment is available. Nausea and vomiting are a common side effect and the drug must be administered during or after the patient's main meal under direct observation by trained health personnel. Due to late relapses, the EMA recommends follow-up to 24 months after treatment.
- Human African trypanosomiasis
- Neglected diseases
- Nifurtimox and eflornithine combination therapy (NECT)
- Parasitic diseases
- Sleeping sickness