Objective Ureaplasma spp are the most commonly isolated microorganisms in association with preterm birth. Maternal erythromycin administration is a standard treatment for preterm prelabor rupture of membranes. There is little evidence of its effectiveness in eradicating Ureaplasma spp from the intrauterine cavity and fetus. We used a sheep model of intrauterine Ureaplasma spp infection to investigate the efficacy of repeated maternal intramuscular and intraamniotic erythromycin treatment to eradicate such an infection. Study Design Thirty ewes with singleton pregnancies received an intraamniotic injection of 107 color change units of erythromycin-sensitive Ureaplasma parvum serovar 3 at 55 days' gestation. At 116 days' gestation, 28 ewes with viable fetuses were randomized to receive (1) intraamniotic and maternal intramuscular saline solution treatment (n = 8), (2) single intraamniotic and repeated maternal intramuscular erythromycin treatment (n = 10), or (3) single maternal intramuscular and repeated intraamniotic erythromycin treatment (n = 10). Fetuses were surgically delivered at 125 days' gestation. Treatment efficacy was assessed by culture, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, and histopathologic evaluation. Results Animals treated with intraamniotic erythromycin had significantly less viable U parvum serovar 3 in the amniotic fluid at delivery. However, neither combination of maternal intramuscular and intraamniotic erythromycin treatment successfully cleared U parvum serovar 3 from the amniotic fluid or fetal tissues. Three de novo erythromycin-resistant U parvum isolates were identified in erythromycin-treated animals. Conclusion Erythromycin treatment, given both to the ewe and into the amniotic cavity, fails to eradicate intrauterine and fetal U parvum serovar 3 infection and may lead to development of erythromycin resistant U parvum.
|Journal||American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology|
|Publication status||Published - 2014 Aug|
- Ureaplasma parvum
- preterm birth
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Obstetrics and Gynaecology