Is azithromycin adequate treatment for asymptomatic rectal chlamydia?

F. Drummond*, N. Ryder, H. Wand, R. Guy, P. Read, A. M. McNulty, L. Wray, B. Donovan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


Rectal chlamydia is a common sexually transmissible infection (STI) in men who have sex with men (MSM) that is predominantly asymptomatic. The recommended treatment of azithromycin 1 g as a single oral dose has not been subject to randomized trials and so its efficacy is unknown. We conducted a retrospective case-note review of all MSM diagnosed at the Sydney Sexual Health Centre with asymptomatic rectal chlamydia in 2009. We identified 116 MSM who received azithromycin; 85 (73%) attended for the recommended re-test at varying times (median 78 days, range 21-372 days). Of the men who returned, 11 (13%) had a persistently positive result; we reviewed behavioural data to classify these men as probable re-infections (6/11) or possible treatment failures (5/11), suggesting an efficacy of 94%. Until a randomized controlled trial (RCT) is conducted, patients with rectal chlamydia should be encouraged to attend for a re-test at 6-12 weeks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)478-480
Number of pages3
JournalInternational Journal of STD and AIDS
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Antibiotic
  • Azithromycin
  • Chlamydia trachomatis
  • High-risk behaviour
  • MSM
  • Treatment


Dive into the research topics of 'Is azithromycin adequate treatment for asymptomatic rectal chlamydia?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this