Masking Of Infections

Masking of infections by chemotherapy is an important possibility. The risk cannot be entirely avoided but it can be minimised by intelligent use of antimicrobials. For example, a course of penicillin adequate to cure gonorrhoea may prevent simultaneously contracted syphilis from showing primary and secondary stages without effecting a cure and a serological test for syphilis should be done 3 months after treatment for gonorrhoea.

Drugs of choice

Table 11.1 is provided for reference. It is a summary of the choice of antimicrobial drugs and owes its form and much of its contents to Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics (USA) (2000). We are grateful to the Chairman of the Editorial Board for permission to use this material which is modified for predominantly UK usage (PNB, MJB).

The table should be used to supplement the general text. Some differences will be noted between text and table for there may be no single correct procedure for each infection. Suggested alternatives do not necessarily comprise all options.

Tables on drugs for viruses, fungi, protozoa and helminths are provided in Chapter 14.

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