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Optimal treatment of leptospirosis: queries and projections


Although the global burden of leptospirosis remains enormous and new aspects of the disease are constantly recognised, little progress has been achieved in the field of leptospirosis therapeutics and queries regarding the utility of antibiotics in the late severe form of the disease remain. From the currently existing data, conclusions on the efficacy of antibiotic administration in severe or late disease cannot easily be drawn, since clinical trials have different selection criteria and may focus on Leptospira serovars with different virulence. However, as a rule the benefit of the doubt should apply. Moreover, new options, such as ceftriaxone, have a superior safety profile to penicillin. In vitro studies have outlined potential antimicrobial candidates such as macrolides and ketolides. Development of a globally accepted subunit vaccine for humans is warranted but is not expected in the near future