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      Intensive phase treatment outcome and associated factors among patients treated for multi drug resistant tuberculosis in Ethiopia: a retrospective cohort study

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          Multi-drug resistant Tuberculosis (MDR-TB) is a strain of Mycobacterium tuberculosis that is resistant to at least Rifampicin and Isoniazid drugs. The treatment success rate for MDR-TB cases is lower than for drug susceptible TB. Globally only 55% of MDR-TB patients were successfully treated. Monitoring the early treatment outcome and better understanding of the specific reasons for early unfavorable and unknown treatment outcome is crucial for preventing the emergence of further drug-resistant tuberculosis. However, this information is scarce in Ethiopia. Therefore, this study aimed to determine the intensive phase treatment outcome and contributing factors among patients treated for MDR-TB in Ethiopia.


          A 6 year retrospective cohort record review was conducted in fourteen TICs all over the country. The records of 751 MDR-TB patients were randomly selected using simple random sampling technique. Data were collected using a pre-tested and structured checklist. Multivariable multinomial logistic regression was undertaken to identify the contributing factors.


          At the end of the intensive phase, 17.3% of MDR-TB patients had an unfavorable treatment outcome, while 16.8% had an unknown outcome with the remaining having a favorable outcome. The median duration of the intensive phase was 9.0 months (IQR 8.04–10.54). Having an unfavorable intensive phase treatment outcome was found significantly more common among older age [ARRR = 1.047, 95% CI (1.024, 1.072)] and those with a history of hypokalemia [ARRR = 0.512, 95% CI (0.280, 0.939)]. Having an unknown intensive phase treatment outcome was found to be more common among those treated under the ambulatory care [ARRR = 3.2, 95% CI (1.6, 6.2)], rural dwellers [ARRR = 0.370, 95% CI (0.199, 0.66)], those without a treatment supporter [ARRR = 0.022, 95% CI (0.002, 0.231)], and those with resistance to a limited number of drugs.


          We observed a higher rate of unfavorable and unknown treatment outcome in this study. To improve favorable treatment outcome more emphasis should be given to conducting all scheduled laboratory monitoring tests, assignment of treatment supporters for each patient and ensuring complete recording and reporting which could be enhanced by quarterly cohort review. Older aged and rural patients need special attention. Furthermore, the sample referral network should be strengthened.

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          Time to sputum culture conversion in multidrug-resistant tuberculosis: predictors and relationship to treatment outcome.

          Conversion of sputum mycobacterial cultures from positive growth to negative growth of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in patients with pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) is considered the most important interim indicator of the efficacy of anti-TB pharmacologic treatment for multidrug-resistant disease. To evaluate and compare time to and predictors of initial sputum culture conversion with predictors of treatment outcome for patients with multidrug-resistant TB. Retrospective cohort study. Latvia. All civilian patients with multidrug-resistant TB treated with the DOTS-Plus strategy between 1 January and 31 December 2000. Individualized treatment for confirmed sputum culture-positive pulmonary multidrug-resistant TB. Time to initial sputum culture conversion and treatment outcome. Among 167 patients who were sputum culture-positive at initiation of second-line therapy, 129 (77%) converted in a median time of 60 days (range, 4 to 462 days) and 38 (23%) did not convert. Independent predictors of a longer sputum culture conversion time, using an accelerated failure time regression model, included previous treatment for multidrug-resistant TB, high initial sputum culture colony count, bilateral cavitations on chest radiography, and the number of drugs the initial isolate was resistant to at treatment initiation. Treatment outcomes were statistically significantly worse for patients who did not convert their sputum culture within 2 months. Twenty-five percent of patients missed 5 or more monthly sputum collections. Under program conditions in Latvia, most patients with multidrug-resistant TB achieved sputum culture conversion within 12 weeks of starting treatment. Chest radiography and sputum culture drug susceptibility testing can assist physicians in predicting which patients will convert more slowly. Sputum culture conversion is a useful and appropriate interim indicator of treatment outcome in patients with multidrug-resistant TB.
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            Early Outcomes of MDR-TB Treatment in a High HIV-Prevalence Setting in Southern Africa

            Background Little is known about treatment of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) in high HIV-prevalence settings such as sub-Saharan Africa. Methodology/Principal Findings We did a retrospective analysis of early outcomes of the first cohort of patients registered in the Lesotho national MDR-TB program between July 21, 2007 and April 21, 2008. Seventy-six patients were included for analysis. Patient follow-up ended when an outcome was recorded, or on October 21, 2008 for those still on treatment. Fifty-six patients (74%) were infected with HIV; the median CD4 cell count was 184 cells/μl (range 5–824 cells/μl). By the end of the follow-up period, study patients had been followed for a median of 252 days (range 12–451 days). Twenty-two patients (29%) had died, and 52 patients (68%) were alive and in treatment. In patients who did not die, culture conversion was documented in 52/54 patients (96%). One patient had defaulted, and one patient had transferred out. Death occurred after a median of 66 days in treatment (range 12–374 days). Conclusions/Significance In a region where clinicians and program managers are increasingly confronted by drug-resistant tuberculosis, this report provides sobering evidence of the difficulty of MDR-TB treatment in high HIV-prevalence settings. In Lesotho, an innovative community-based treatment model that involved social and nutritional support, twice-daily directly observed treatment and early empiric use of second-line TB drugs was successful in reducing mortality of MDR-TB patients. Further research is urgently needed to improve MDR-TB treatment outcomes in high HIV-prevalence settings.
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              Ambulatory Multi-Drug Resistant Tuberculosis Treatment Outcomes in a Cohort of HIV-Infected Patients in a Slum Setting in Mumbai, India

              Background India carries one quarter of the global burden of multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) and has an estimated 2.5 million people living with HIV. Despite this reality, provision of treatment for MDR-TB is extremely limited, particularly for HIV-infected individuals. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has been treating HIV-infected MDR-TB patients in Mumbai since May 2007. This is the first report of treatment outcomes among HIV-infected MDR-TB patients in India. Methods HIV-infected patients with suspected MDR-TB were referred to the MSF-clinic by public Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) Centers or by a network of community non-governmental organizations. Patients were initiated on either empiric or individualized second-line TB-treatment as per WHO recommendations. MDR-TB treatment was given on an ambulatory basis and under directly observed therapy using a decentralized network of providers. Patients not already receiving ART were started on treatment within two months of initiating MDR-TB treatment. Results Between May 2007 and May 2011, 71 HIV-infected patients were suspected to have MDR-TB, and 58 were initiated on treatment. MDR-TB was confirmed in 45 (78%), of which 18 (40%) were resistant to ofloxacin. Final treatment outcomes were available for 23 patients; 11 (48%) were successfully treated, 4 (17%) died, 6 (26%) defaulted, and 2 (9%) failed treatment. Overall, among 58 patients on treatment, 13 (22%) were successfully treated, 13 (22%) died, 7 (12%) defaulted, two (3%) failed treatment, and 23 (40%) were alive and still on treatment at the end of the observation period. Twenty-six patients (45%) experienced moderate to severe adverse events, requiring modification of the regimen in 12 (20%). Overall, 20 (28%) of the 71 patients with MDR-TB died, including 7 not initiated on treatment. Conclusions Despite high fluoroquinolone resistance and extensive prior second-line treatment, encouraging results are being achieved in an ambulatory MDR-T- program in a slum setting in India. Rapid scale-up of both ART and second-line treatment for MDR-TB is needed to ensure survival of co-infected patients and mitigate this growing epidemic.

                Author and article information

                BMC Infect Dis
                BMC Infect. Dis
                BMC Infectious Diseases
                BioMed Central (London )
                18 September 2019
                18 September 2019
                : 19
                [1 ]Dire Dawa Administration Heath Bureau, Dire Dawa, Ethiopia
                [2 ]ISNI 0000 0001 0108 7468, GRID grid.192267.9, College of Health and Medical Sciences, , Haramaya University, ; Harar, Ethiopia
                [3 ]ISNI 0000 0001 2188 3883, GRID grid.418950.1, KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation, ; The Hague, The Netherlands
                [4 ]ISNI 0000000084992262, GRID grid.7177.6, Department of Global Health and Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development, , Amsterdam University Medical Centers, ; Amsterdam, The Netherlands
                [5 ]GRID grid.414835.f, Federal Ministry of Health of Ethiopia, ; Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
                [6 ]Dire Dawa University, School of Medicine, Dire Dawa, Ethiopia
                [7 ]KNCV Tuberculosis Foundations /USAID/Challenge TB, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
                [8 ]ISNI 0000 0000 4319 4715, GRID grid.418720.8, Armauer Hansen Research Institute (AHRI), ; Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
                © The Author(s). 2019

                Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Research Article
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                © The Author(s) 2019

                Infectious disease & Microbiology

                multi-drug resistance tb, outcome, intensive phase, ethiopia


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