Efficacy of Nefopam for the Prevention and Treatment of Amphotericin B—Induced Shivering

Giovanni Rosa, MD; Donatella Dell'Utri, MD; Giorgio Conti, MD; Paolo Pelaia, MD; Alessandro Cogliati, MD; Paolo Orsi, MD; Alessandro Gasparetto, MD
Arch Intern Med. 1997;157(14):1589-1592. doi:10.1001/archinte.1997.00440350097010.
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Background:  Shivering is experienced by up to 70% of patients undergoing amphotericin B therapy. Treatment with meperidine hydrochloride, currently the most widely used medication for controlling amphotericin B—induced shivering, was compared with nefopam hydrochloride, which has been successfully used to treat post-operative shivering.

Methods:  Forty-five patients with cancer and systemic fungal infections randomly received nefopam hydrochloride, 0.3 mg/kg, meperidine hydrochloride, 0.7 mg/kg, or saline solution intravenously 15 minutes before the cessation of amphotericin B infusion (1 mg/kg for 45 minutes). If shivering persisted, patients in the control (saline solution) group received either nefopam hydrochloride, 0.3 mg/kg, or meperidine hydrochloride, 0.7 mg/kg.

Results:  Occurrence of shivering 15 minutes after the cessation of amphotericin B infusion was significantly less frequent in the nefopam (6.6%) and meperidine (40%) groups compared with the control group (66.6%). The incidence of shivering in the nefopam group with respect to the meperidine group was also significantly reduced. Moreover, nefopam administration to 5 persistently shivering patients in the control group definitively stopped the shivering in all of them (100%) in a mean (±SD) time of 29.1±4.8 seconds, while meperidine terminated shivering in 4 (80%) of 5 patients in a mean (±SD) time of 200.0±30.2 seconds. The adverse reactions that can be ascribed to nefopam or meperidine use were nausea and sedation, respectively, and may be considered negligible.

Conclusion:  Nefopam seems to be more effective than meperidine in preventing and quickly suppressing amphotericin B—induced shivering.Arch Intern Med. 1997;157:1589-1592


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