‘Virtually untreatable’ TB found

By | September 7, 2006

Virtually untreatable TB found

A “virtually untreatable” form of TB has emerged, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Extreme drug resistant TB (XDR TB) has been seen worldwide, including in the US, Eastern Europe and Africa, although Western Europe has had no cases.

Dr Paul Nunn, from the WHO, said a failure to correctly implement treatment strategies was to blame. TB experts have convened in Johannesburg, South Africa, to discuss how to address the problem.? TB presently causes about 1.7 million deaths a year worldwide, but researchers are worried about the emergence of strains that are resistant to drugs. …

XDR TB is defined as strains that are not only resistant to the front-line drugs, but also three or more of the six classes of second-line drugs. This, according to Dr Paul Nunn, coordinator of the WHO team at the Stop TB department, makes it virtually untreatable. – bbc

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