Background: Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) in patients with CF is associated with frequent exacerbations and deterioration of lung function. Oral corticosteroids are standard therapy for ABPA and are associated with severe side effects. Monthly pulses of high-dose intravenous methylprednisolone (HDIVPM) are an effective therapy for autoimmune diseases with fewer side effects compared to oral prednisone, implicating its use for patients with CF who suffer from ABPA.
Methods: 9 patients with CF and ABPA (4 male, 5 female, ages 7-36 years) received HDIVPM (10-15 mg/kg/d), for 3 days per month, and itraconazole, until clinical and laboratory resolution of ABPA.
Results: All patients showed clinical and laboratory improvement (FEV(1) increase, serum IgE levels and total eosinophil counts decrease) and treatment was discontinued after 6-10 pulses. Adverse effects were minor and disappeared shortly after each IV pulse therapy.
Conclusion: High-dose IV-pulse methylprednisolone is an effective treatment for ABPA in CF with minor side effects.