Objective: To determine the prevalence and outcome of intravenous gamma-globulin (IVIG) retreatment in patients with Kawasaki disease (KD).
Method: Multicenter, retrospective survey of all children with KD evaluated at nine clinical centers across North America during a 15-month period.
Results: Data were available for 378 patients. At 48 h after completion of the initial IVIG infusion, 50 patients (13.2%) remained febrile, 29 (58.0%) of whom were retreated with IVIG, including 4 (13.8%) with coronary artery abnormalities before their first IVIG infusion. Among 25 retreated patients with a normal baseline echocardiogram, 5 (20.0%) developed coronary abnormalities and were termed "treatment failures." Among the 323 patients with a normal baseline echocardiogram, only 9 (2.8%) were treatment failures; treatment failure occurred in 4 of 282 (1.4%) patients who became afebrile post-IVIG and in 5 of 41 (12.2%) patients with persistent or recrudescent fever after their first course of IVIG therapy (P=0.002).
Conclusions: The overall prevalence of new coronary abnormalities in KD patients treated with IVIG and aspirin remains low. Persistent or recrudescent fever after the first course of IVIG was associated with an increased risk of treatment failure (P=0.002). IVIG retreatment in patients who remain febrile after the first course of IVIG is now common (58.0%), although the efficacy of this practice requires assessment with a randomized trial.