Background: Strongyloides stercoralis infection presents with varying degrees of severity, but it often primarily involves the small bowel. In severe infection and cases of hyperinfection, ileus and small-bowel obstruction may prevent enteral absorption of anthelminthics such as ivermectin. At present there are no parenteral anthelminthics licensed for use in humans.
Methods: Here, we describe two cases of severe S. stercoralis infection treated with an unlicensed veterinary preparation of subcutaneous ivermectin, and we discuss the published reports of the use of this treatment elsewhere.
Results: Both patients were successfully treated with subcutaneous ivermectin, and both recovered completely.
Conclusions: Despite the limited published experience of parenteral ivermectin use, there is evidence that it may be a safe and effective treatment for severe strongyloidiasis. However, more data are needed to guide dosing schedules and monitoring for toxicity.
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