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Azithromycin versus Amoxicillin and Malarial Parasitemia among Children with Uncomplicated Severe Acute Malnutrition: A Randomized Controlled Trial.


Antibiotics are recommended by the WHO as part of the management of uncomplicated severe acute malnutrition in children. We evaluated whether azithromycin, an antibiotic with antimalarial properties, improved malarial parasitemia outcomes in children with severe acute malnutrition compared with amoxicillin, an antibiotic commonly used for severe acute malnutrition that does not have antimalarial properties. Total of 301 children were randomized (1:1) to a single oral dose of azithromycin or a 7-day course of amoxicillin and followed for 8 weeks. We found no significant evidence that children receiving azithromycin had improved parasitemia outcomes relative to amoxicillin. Although azithromycin may have advantages over amoxicillin in terms of dosing and administration for uncomplicated severe acute malnutrition, it may not yield additional benefit for malaria outcomes.

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