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Antimicrobial chemotherapy of human infection due to Listeria monocytogenes

Antimicrobial chemotherapy of human infection due to Listeria monocytogenes

European Journal of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases 14(3): 165-175

Listeriosis is an uncommon infection, but when it occurs it carries a high mortality rate. Early diagnosis is essential and thereafter appropriate antimicrobial chemotherapy. Ampicillin or penicillin plus gentamicin remains the treatment of choice for most manifestations of listeriosis, and adequate doses must be given, i.e. greater than 6 g/day of ampicillin or penicillin. Co-trimoxazole appears to be an excellent alternative agent with good penetration into the cerebrospinal fluid. Vancomycin is an appropriate agent for the treatment of primary bacteraemia but does not cross the blood-brain barrier sufficiently well to be useful in meningitis, while erythromycin may be used to treat listeriosis in cases of pregnancy. Treatment of bacteraemia requires one to two weeks' therapy, while meningitis cases may need to be treated for longer; for example, it has been found that most patients with acute meningitis in the UK were treated for 20 days. Infective endocarditis needs treatment for six to eight weeks. Doses should be varied with patients' altered organ function and antimicrobial serum monitoring performed when appropriate.

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Accession: 009770651

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PMID: 7614955

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