Pediatric Sporotrichosis Medication

Updated: Feb 12, 2019
  • Author: William P Baugh, MD; Chief Editor: Russell W Steele, MD  more...
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Medication Summary

Approach the treatment of sporotrichosis based upon each patient's clinical presentation and severity of illness. Most patients are treated with some form of antifungal therapy. Many agents are reported to be successful. For simple cutaneous forms, a saturated solution of potassium iodide is often used and is the least expensive form of treatment.

Systemic antifungal medications, such as amphotericin B, itraconazole, [14, 15] terbinafine, or fluconazole, may be used to treat more severe forms of sporotrichosis (eg, lymphonodular, pulmonary, osteoarticular, disseminated). For all clinical types of sporotrichosis, continue the treatment course for at least 1 week after clinical cure.


Antifungal agents

Class Summary

The mechanism of action may involve an alteration of RNA and DNA metabolism or an intracellular accumulation of peroxide that is toxic to the fungal cell.

Potassium iodide (SSKI)

For simple cutaneous lesions, the least expensive medication for treatment is a saturated solution of potassium iodide. This approach is commonly used in developing countries because of its low cost. SSKI can be administered on average for approximately 4-6 wk, but as long as 6 months. However, prolonged use should be undertaken with caution (see interactions below). The mechanism of action is unknown. Ineffective for systemic disease.

Itraconazole (Sporanox)

DOC for cutaneous sporotrichosis. A fungistatic azole with broad spectrum of activity because of its inhibition of enzyme 14-alpha-demethylase, which is needed by the fungus for cell wall synthesis. Particularly effective for lymphocutaneous forms of sporotrichosis but may be used for fixed cutaneous and systemic forms. The caps and PO solution are not interchangeable (PO solution exhibits higher bioavailability).

Amphotericin B (Fungizone)

DOC for disseminated or meningeal forms of systemic sporotrichosis. Some providers even consider this DOC for lymphocutaneous forms of sporotrichosis.

Polyene antibiotic produced by a strain of Streptomyces nodosus; can be fungistatic or fungicidal. Binds to sterols, such as ergosterol, in the fungal cell membrane, causing intracellular components to leak with subsequent fungal cell death.

Terbinafine (Daskil, Lamisil)

A fungicidal allylamine antifungal agent. Considered a third-line agent against sporotrichosis. Blocks ergosterol synthesis by inhibiting squalene epoxidase. Effective against S schenckii and other fungi and fungal infections, including most dermatophytes, Aspergillus species, blastomycosis, histoplasmosis, and Scopulariopsis brevicaulis. Terbinafine is well absorbed PO and has a long half-life.

No elixir form is available; 250-mg tab is not scored and cannot be easily pulverized for use in children and is not palatable.

Fluconazole (Diflucan)

A broad-spectrum azole antifungal agent. Considered a third-line agent for sporotrichosis treatment. Effective for various fungi, including dermatophytes, candidal species, S schenckii, and some molds. It inhibits the enzyme 14-alpha-demethylase, preventing fungal cell wall formation.