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19 March, 2010

Drug Resistant Tuberculosis Spreads Across the Globe

Drug resistant tuberculosis spreads across the globe | guardian.co.uk: "... The World Health Organization has produced a report showing the spread of multi and extremely drug-resistant forms of the disease (MDR and XDR-TB) across the globe... [and] over 50 [countries] have acknowledged at least one case.

But where drug resistance is most alarming, in parts of Africa where HIV rates are high and people are extremely vulnerable to infections, we can't yet know what's happening. If the death rates among people with HIV start to climb, though, it's not unlikely that drug-resistant TB will be the reason. Drug-resistant TB costs 50 to 200 times more to treat than the ordinary kind (and it's a two-year course), but frankly that's only an issue in countries that have the right drugs. In most of Africa, they don't, and XDR or MDR-TB is a death sentence..."


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