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Notice to Readers: Shortage of Spectinomycin

In April 2001, Pharmacia Corporation (Peapack, New Jersey) announced it was discontinuing U.S. production of spectinomycin (Trobicin®)* because of low sales volume; remaining spectinomycin inventory will expire on June 30, 2001. No other pharmaceutical company manufactures or sells spectinomycin in the United States.

CDC recommends treating patients infected with Neisseria gonorrhoeae who have contraindications to cephalosporins and fluoroquinolones with spectinomycin (1). Patients in this category include: 1) pregnant women with documented cephalosporin allergies (fluoroquinolones are contraindicated in pregnancy); and 2) patients with documented cephalosporin allergies who acquired gonorrhea infection in areas where fluoroquinolone-resistant N. gonorrhoeae is endemic (e.g., Asia, Hawaii, and other Pacific Islands) (2).

For access to spectinomycin until June 30, contact Wendy Johnson, Pharmacia Corporation, telephone (800) 976-7741, ext. 30110 or fax (800) 852-6421. In response to this shortage, CDC and the Food and Drug Administration are working with Pharmacia Corporation to identify a solution. Interim alternative treatment recommendations are available at or from CDC's Fax Information System (888) 232-3299 ([888] CDC-FAXX), by entering document number 210100.


  1. CDC. 1998 Guidelines for treatment of sexually transmitted diseases. MMWR 1998;47(no. RR-1).
  2. CDC. Fluoroquinolone-resistance in Neisseria gonorrhoeae, Hawaii, 1999, and decreased susceptibility to azithromycin in N. gonorrhoeae, Missouri, 1999. MMWR 2000;49:833--7.

*Use of trade names is for identification only and does not imply endorsement by CDC or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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Page converted: 6/8/2001


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This page last reviewed 6/8/2001