Br J Ophthalmol 87:147-148 doi:10.1136/bjo.87.2.147
  • Scientific correspondence

Community treatment with azithromycin for trachoma is not associated with antibiotic resistance in Streptococcus pneumoniae at 1 year

  1. B D Gaynor1,
  2. K A Holbrook2,
  3. J P Whitcher1,
  4. S O Holm3,
  5. H C Jha4,
  6. J S P Chaudhary4,
  7. R C Bhatta4,
  8. T Lietman1
  1. 1The Francis I Proctor Foundation and the Department of Ophthalmology, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA
  2. 2Community Health Epidemiology and Disease Control, San Francisco Department of Public Health, San Francisco, CA, USA
  3. 3The Francis I Proctor Foundation
  4. 4Geta Eye Hospital, Geta, Nepal
  1. Correspondence to: Bruce D Gaynor, MD, The Francis I Proctor Foundation and the Department of Ophthalmology, UCSF Medical Center, San Francisco, CA 94143–0944, USA; bgaynor{at}
  • Accepted 19 March 2002


Aims: To determine if macrolide resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae will be a major concern in areas that receive annual mass azithromycin distributions for trachoma.

Methods: A cross sectional survey was conducted of nasopharyngeal S pneumoniae isolates for susceptibility to azithromycin 1 year after administering a single dose of azithromycin to treat trachoma in a village in Nepal.

Results:S pneumoniae was isolated from 50 (86%) of 57 nasopharyngeal cultures and no resistance to azithromycin was detected.

Conclusion: The authors were unable to demonstrate that mass azithromycin therapy for trachoma produced macrolide resistant S pneumoniae that persists until the next scheduled annual treatment.