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Eur Respir J. 2008 Jun;31(6):1155-9. doi: 10.1183/09031936.00028708.

Resistance to second-line injectables and treatment outcomes in multidrug-resistant and extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis cases.

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WHO Collaborating Centre for TB and Lung Diseases, Fondazione S. Maugeri, Care and Research Institute, via Roncaccio 16, 21049, Tradate, Italy.


No information is currently available on the influence of injectable second-line drugs on treatment outcomes of multidrug-resistant (MDR) and extensively drug-resistant (XDR) tuberculosis (TB) patients. To investigate this issue, a large series of MDR- and XDR-TB cases diagnosed in Estonia, Germany, Italy and the Russian Federation (Archangels Oblast) between 1999 and 2006 were analysed. All study sites performed drug susceptibility testing for first- and second-line anti-TB drugs, laboratory quality assurance and treatment delivery according to World Health Organization recommendations. Out of 4,583 culture-confirmed cases, 240 MDR- and 48 XDR-TB cases had a definitive outcome recorded (treatment success, death, failure). Among MDR- and XDR-TB cases, capreomycin resistance yielded a higher proportion of failure and death than capreomycin-susceptible cases. Resistance to capreomycin was independently associated with unfavourable outcome (logistic regression analysis: odds ratio 3.51). In the treatment of patients with multidrug-resistant and extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis, resistance to the injectable drug capreomycin was an independent predictor for therapy failure in this cohort. As Mycobacterium tuberculosis drug resistance is increasing worldwide, there is an urgent need for novel interventions in the fight against tuberculosis.

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