Background: Previously, a double-blind, randomized, multicentre study (LION study) compared the efficacy of continuous terbinafine 250 mg daily for 3 or 4 months with itraconazole pulse therapy 400 mg daily for 3 or 4 months. At the end of the study at week 72 terbinafine proved to be more effective.
Objectives: To perform a 4-year follow-up of the Finnish participants in this study.
Methods: Patients were re-examined clinically and mycologically.
Results: Complete clinical and mycological cure with terbinafine for 4 months was 78% compared with 35% with terbinafine for 3 months, 24% with itraconazole for 4 months and 28% with itraconazole for 3 months.
Conclusions: These results suggest that the initial treatment for onychomycosis should be a 4-month continuous course of terbinafine.