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Search for a mass chemotherapeutic drug for cholera control: A study of vibrio excretion following single and multiple dose treatment*

By E. J. Gangarosa, H. Saghari, J. Emile, A. Sanati, H. Siadat and Y. Watanabe


In a study designed to seek a suitable drug for mass chemotherapy during a cholera epidemic, four drugs were administered in single doses to patients with cholera in Iran. Streptomycin was administered orally; penicillin, parenterally; and chloramphenicol and a long-acting sulfa drug, both orally and parenterally. No drug consistently eliminated vibrios from the intestinal tract. Chloramphenicol was also administered in multiple doses for three days; this also failed to eliminate vibrios in one-third of 25 patients studied. The major problem with these drugs administered orally seems to be rapid elimination and poor absorption by patients with diarrhoea. The authors do not recommend any of these drugs for single-dose mass chemotherapy and consider that chloramphenicol cannot be recommended for multiple-dose mass chemotherapy

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