CDC Reports Shortage of Bicillin-LA; Recommends Prioritizing Drug for Treatment of Syphilis, Especially in Pregnant Women

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was recently notified of difficulties in obtaining Bicillin-LA (benzathine penicillin G). The CDC notes that benzathine penicillin G is the recommended treatment for syphilis and the only treatment option for pregnant women infected with or exposed to syphilis.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that pregnant women with syphilis should be treated with a penicillin regimen appropriate to the stage of infection, with tetracycline and doxycycline contraindicated during pregnancy and erythromycin and azithromycin being suboptimal treatment options because neither reliably cures maternal infection nor treats and infected fetus (for more information, see Guidelines for Perinatal Care, 7th edition).

Until normal supplies of Bicillin-LA are available, consideration should be given to prioritizing the use of Bicillin-LA for the treatment of syphilis especially in pregnant women infected with or exposed to syphilis.

Report drug shortages to the FDA.

American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
409 12th Street SW, Washington, DC  20024-2188 | Mailing Address: PO Box 70620, Washington, DC 20024-9998