Clinical Practice Guideline for Systemic Antifungal Prophylaxis in Pediatric Patients With Cancer and Hematopoietic Stem-Cell Transplantation Recipients

J Clin Oncol. 2020 Sep 20;38(27):3205-3216. doi: 10.1200/JCO.20.00158. Epub 2020 May 27.


Purpose: To develop a clinical practice guideline for systemic antifungal prophylaxis in pediatric patients with cancer and hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation (HSCT) recipients.

Methods: Recommendations were developed by an international multidisciplinary panel that included a patient advocate. We conducted a systematic review of systemic antifungal prophylaxis in children and adults with cancer and HSCT recipients. The Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation approach was used to make strong or weak recommendations and to classify level of evidence as high, moderate, low, or very low. The panel considered directness of the data to pediatric patients.

Results: There were 68 randomized trials included in the systematic review, of which 6 (9%) were conducted in a solely pediatric population. Strong recommendations were made to administer systemic antifungal prophylaxis to children and adolescents receiving treatment of acute myeloid leukemia, to those undergoing allogeneic HSCT pre-engraftment, and to those receiving systemic immunosuppression for graft-versus-host disease treatment. A strong recommendation was made to administer a mold-active agent with an echinocandin or a mold-active azole when systemic antifungal prophylaxis is warranted. For children younger than 13 years of age, an echinocandin, voriconazole, or itraconazole is suggested. Posaconazole may also be used in those age 13 years or older. A strong recommendation against routine administration of amphotericin as systemic antifungal prophylaxis was made.

Conclusion: We developed a clinical practice guideline for systemic antifungal prophylaxis administration in pediatric patients with cancer and HSCT recipients. Implementation and assessment of guideline-concordant rates and impacts are important future steps.

Publication types

  • Practice Guideline
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Antibiotic Prophylaxis*
  • Antifungal Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation*
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppression Therapy
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Invasive Fungal Infections / prevention & control*
  • Leukemia, Myeloid, Acute / drug therapy
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Patient Selection
  • Precursor Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma / drug therapy
  • Systematic Reviews as Topic
  • Transplantation, Homologous


  • Antifungal Agents