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Background We report clinical characteristics of proctitis caused solely by Mycoplasma genitalium (MG) compared with chlamydia and gonococcus. We determined the proportions cured with first-line (azithromycin) and second-line antimicrobials (moxifloxacin, pristinamycin). Methods A total of 166 patients attending Melbourne Sexual Health Centre from 2012 to 2016 with symptoms of proctitis were tested for MG, Chlamydia trachomatis, and Neisseria gonorrhoeae. Demographic characteristics, sexual behaviors, clinical symptoms, and signs were recorded. Multinomial multivariable logistic regression was used to test for significant differences in symptoms and signs for the pathogens detected. Results Seventeen percent of men had MG (95% confidence interval, 12-24), 21% had chlamydia (15-27), and 40% had gonococcal monoinfection (32-48), whereas 22% had MG coinfection (16-29). Relative to men with MG monoinfection, those with chlamydial monoinfection reported more anal pain (adjusted prevalence odds ratio (aPOR), 4.68 [1.41-14.19]), whereas men with gonococcal monoinfection reported more anal pain (aPOR, 6.75 [2.21-20.55]) and tenesmus (aPOR, 15.44 [1.62-146.90]), but less anal itch (aPOR, 0.32 [0.11-0.93]). The microbiological cure for MG using azithromycin was low at 35% (22-50), whereas moxifloxacin subsequently cured 92% (64-100) and pristinamycin cured 79% (54-94) of infections. Conclusions M. genitalium was almost as common as chlamydia in men presenting to a sexual health center with symptoms of proctitis. Men with anorectal MG monoinfection were less likely to have symptoms and signs compared with those with chlamydia or gonococcus monoinfection. Cure for men with symptomatic anorectal MG by azithromycin was low. We suggest routine testing for MG in cases of proctitis, with test of cure after treatment being essential.
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