What Drugs Can be Used to Treat Candida Infections Such as Candida auris?


Snigdha Vallabhaneni, MD, MPH, discusses the drugs available to treat Candida infections.

Snigdha Vallabhaneni, MD, MPH, Medical Epidemiologist, Mycotic Diseases Branch at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, discusses the drugs available to treat Candida infections.

Interview Transcript (slightly modified for readability)

“There are 3 classes of drugs, generally, that can be used to treat Candida infections. Candida auris is pretty much resistant to fluconazole, which is one of the most common drugs used for treating candidemia, especially in the third world.

Here, in the United States, we’ve been fortunate to not see any resistance to echinocandins, among Candida auris isolates. Echinocandins are the first-line treatment for most of the infections caused by Candida species, but also for Candida auris, and we have been fortunate in that we haven’t seen resistance. But, that doesn’t mean that we won’t see resistance; and this organism has a tendency to develop resistance very quickly. We recommend that when someone is being treated with an echinocandin, that the patient is monitored very closely for treatment failure, so that more drugs can be added on. So, that’s good that we currently do have a treatment option for invasive infections.

There are several other drugs that are in the pipeline, that show promising in vitro results. We haven’t done in vivo testing of new agents, but there’s good in vitro data that they may be effective.

[Regarding] the question about chlorhexidine—which is really a skin disinfectant, and not treatment for invasive infection: there is in vitro data, again, that depending on the type of chlorhexidine, there’s a mixed efficacy, but, right now, we don’t have evidence for or against recommending chlorhexidine.”

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