25 July 2022 · Global Partnership for Zero Leprosy

Factsheet on SDR-PEP: The latest research on single-dose rifampicin post-exposure prophylaxis

Single-dose rifampicin post-exposure prophylaxis (SDR-PEP) is a preventive treatment for leprosy that can be used to reduce the risk of developing leprosy among contacts of leprosy patients and thus, indirectly, reduce transmission of leprosy bacilli. Large-scale, international studies show that SDR-PEP is safe and contributes to reducing leprosy incidence and preventing secondary disabilities. It has been tested in more than 11 countries, and more than 175,000 people have received treatment in research settings. The World Health Organization (WHO) advises the use of SDR-PEP in the Roadmap for Neglected Tropical Diseases 2021 – 2030, the Global Leprosy Strategy, and the WHO Guidelines for the Diagnosis, Treatment, and Prevention of Leprosy. The Global Partnership for Zero Leprosy also recommends SDR-PEP for routine leprosy control services.