How is cervical adenitis caused by Mycobacterium avium-intracellulare (MAI) infection treated?

Updated: May 27, 2021
  • Author: Jaggi Rao, MD, FRCPC; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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All cases of cervical adenitis must be referred to a surgeon.

The mainstay of treatment for cervical adenitis due to Mycobacterium avium-intracellulare (MAI, or MAC) infection is surgical excision, with chemotherapy as primary treatment mainly reserved for cases with surgical contraindications. [35] Vuppalapati et al reported treating MAI infection involving the skin and soft tissues of the hand with radical debridement and reconstruction in addition to multidrug chemotherapy. [36]

The relative infrequency of this condition has precluded clinical trials; therefore, treatment schedules are derived from anecdotal evidence.

Macrolides should be used in combination with rifamycin or ethambutol. Combination therapy with clarithromycin, ethambutol, and rifamycin has also been used.

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