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Idoxuridine in Herpes Simplex Virus (Type 1) Encephalitis: Experience with 29 Cases in Michigan, 1966 to 1971

DAVID C. NOLAN, M.D.; CARL B. LAUTER, M.D.; and A. MARTIN LERNER, M.D., F.A.C.P.
[+] Article and Author Information

Presented in part 17-18 March 1972, "Recent Advances in Infectious Diseases," Boston City Hospital, Boston, and 4 February 1972, Ad hoc Advisory Committee to the Antiviral Substances Program of the Infectious Disease Branch, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

▸Requests for reprints should be addressed to A. Martin Lerner, M.D., 432 E. Hancock St., Detroit, Mich. 48201.


Detroit, Michigan


Ann Intern Med. 1973;78(2):243-246. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-78-2-243
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We studied 29 patients with herpes simplex virus, type 1, encephalitis in Michigan between 1966 and 1971. Twenty patients were treated intravenously with idoxuridine at doses of up to 86 mg/kg body weight per day for 5 days. Overall mortality (among patients surviving for 48 hours after hospitalization) in the treated and supportive groups was 33%. Mortality was greatest in patients over 50 years of age (67%). However, 9 of the 12 idoxuridine-treated survivors are well today, whereas 1 of the 6 nontreated living patients is well. If 54 mg/kg body weight of idoxuridine is given intravenously for 5 days in two divided, rapid infusions (50 mg/min), pharmacologic effects are maximal and toxicity minimal. No patient should be given a total dose of more than 20 g of idoxuridine.

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