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How is Chancroid Treated?


Updated July 19, 2014


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Question: How is Chancroid Treated?


Chancroid is treated with antibiotics. Patients are usually examined 3-7 days after treatment to see if it has been successful. Unsuccessful treatment can occur if you do not take the drugs correctly, or if your infection is resistant to the antibiotic you were treated with. Patients with HIV and uncircumcised male patients do not respond as well to treatment as others, and may need additional follow-up.


If you have been diagnosed with chancroid, any sexual partners you had within 10 days before you started to have symptoms should be examined and treated as well – whether or not they have symptoms.

The drug regimens below are taken from the the Centers for Disease Control 2010 STD treatment guidelines. Remember that only your doctor can say which treatment is right for you.

Recommended Regimens

Azithromycin 1 g orally in a single dose
Ceftriaxone 250 mg intramuscularly (IM) in a single dose
Ciprofloxacin* 500 mg orally twice a day for 3 days
Erythromycin base* 500 mg orally three times a day for 7 days

*Some strains of H. ducreyi, the bacterium that causes chancroid, have been reported to be resistant to these antibiotics.

Pregnant women should not be treated with ciprofloxacin.

If Treatment is Ineffective

If treatment for chancroid fails, your doctor may want to test you for other STDs, including HIV. Individuals who are coinfected with both HIV and chancroid are not only harder to treat, they may have more severe symptoms. Therefore, it important to look for other infections after a treatment failure, particularly since chancroid is becoming increasingly rare in the U.S.



Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Sexually Transmitted Diseases Treatment Guidelines, 2010. MMWR 2010;59(No. RR-12). Accessed 7/19/2014 from: http://www.cdc.gov/std/treatment/2010

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