Combined Intravitreal and Systemic Antibiotic Therapy in a Patient with Syphilitic Uveitis


Sood AB, Pearce WA, Workowski KA, Lockwood J, Yeh S. Combined Intravitreal and Systemic Antibiotic Therapy in a Patient with Syphilitic Uveitis. Ocul Immunol Inflamm 2017;:1-3.

Date Published:

2017 Oct 20


PURPOSE: To report the novel use of combined intravitreal and systemic antibiotic therapy in a patient with syphilitic panuveitis and discuss the management of ocular syphilis. METHODS: Case report Results: A 45-year old heterosexual male with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) presented with 1 month of blurry vision in both eyes. Clinical examination revealed a bilateral panuveitis. The patient denied history of genital lesions or rash, but did complain of difficulty hearing bilaterally. Treponemal EIA was positive, the RPR titer greater than 1:512 dilution, and CSF VDRL 1:4. A diagnosis of neurosyphilis and ocular syphilis was made based on the clinical and laboratory findings. The patient was admitted for systemic intravenous antibiotic therapy, but was noted to have a penicillin allergy. Intravitreal ceftazidime was promptly administered bilaterally to achieve treponemacidal levels of antibiotic therapy. After penicillin desensitization protocol, the patient received 14 days of intravenous penicillin with clinical resolution. CONCLUSIONS: There are increasing reports of ocular syphilis in the United States and delay in diagnosis and management can lead to severe visual impairment and blindness. We report the first case of adjunct intravitreal antibiotic therapy in a penicillin allergic patient. As ocular syphilis is a form of bacterial endophthalmitis, combination intravitreal and systemic antibiotics may be considered.

Last updated on 11/02/2017