Lymphatic filariasis (lympoedema and hydrocoele) and onchocerciasis (dermatitis and ocular inflammation) caused by the parasitic filarial nematodes Wuchereria bancrofti , Brugia spp. and Onchocerca volvulus lead to severe morbidity in developing tropical countries. Mass drug administration (MDA) programmes use ivermectin or diethylcarbamazine, often combined with albendazole, with the aim to eliminate filarial diseases. However, these drugs primarily only kill the first stage larvae, the microfilariae. Removal of the parasites' mutualistic endosymbionts of the genus Wolbachia using anti-rickettsial drugs results in permanent worm sterility and death of the adult worms. Since it is currently not compatible with mass drug administration due to the comparatively long treatment time of 4-6 weeks, doxycycline has been recommended for physician-monitored treatment of individuals. For individuals suffering from filarial pathology, the use of doxycycline is the first drug to have the additional advantage of improving lymphoedema. However, new drugs and regimes need to be in the pipeline in order to tackle the upcoming or already existing problem areas, such as those with ivermectin resistance, areas coendemic for loiasis, or end-game scenarios. Here, we summarize current treatment options and review current research approaches for optimization of anti-helminthic therapy, including the exploration of optimized delivery strategies of ivermectin and albendazole, the discovery and development of new antibiotics for anti-wolbachial chemotherapy and macrofilaricidal antihelminthics.