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* This is the Professional Version. *

Spectinomycin

By Hans P. Schlecht, MD, MSc, Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases & HIV Medicine, Drexel University College of Medicine ; Christopher Bruno, MD, Division of infectious Diseases & HIV Medicine, Drexel University College of Medicine

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Spectinomycin is a bacteriostatic antibiotic chemically related to the aminoglycosides (see Aminoglycosides ). Spectinomycin binds to the 30S subunit of the ribosome, thus inhibiting bacterial protein synthesis. Its activity is restricted to gonococci. Spectinomycin is excreted by glomerular filtration.

Indications include

  • Gonococcal urethritis

  • Cervicitis

  • Proctitis

Spectinomycin is not effective for gonococcal pharyngitis. It is not available in the US, and where available, it is reserved for patients who cannot be treated with ceftriaxone or cefixime plus azithromycin or doxycycline.

Adverse effects, including hypersensitivity reactions and fever, are rare.

* This is the Professional Version. *