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Initial screening for antituberculous drug resistance at an inpatient facility in Leon, Nicaragua.


Am J Trop Med Hyg. 1997 Jan;56(1):24-6. Unique Identifier : AIDSLINE

Antituberculous (anti-TB) drug resistance has become a major tuberculosis control issue in the United States, where this situation has closely paralleled the current acquired immunodeficiency syndrome epidemic associated with human immunodeficiency virus type-1 (HIV-1) infections. In less developed countries, especially those like Nicaragua with an apparently low prevalence of known HIV-1 infections, less is known about the epidemiology of antituberculous drug resistance. To understand the potential extent of this problem in Nicaragua, we conducted a cross-sectional prevalence study at Nicaragua's only inpatient tuberculosis treatment facility, located in Leon, Nicaragua. A radiometric method was used during recovery, purification, and drug susceptibility testing of clinical Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates. Resistance to at least one of the major anti-TB medications was found in 15 (40.5%) of 37 sputum isolates, of which seven (19%) were resistant to either isoniazid alone, or to isoniazid plus another agent other than rifampin. Five were resistant to at least isoniazid and rifampin i.e., 13.5% demonstrated multidrug resistance). Two isolates were resistant to pyrazinamide alone, and one was resistant to streptomycin alone. These initial results suggest that anti-TB drug resistance is a defined problem for tuberculosis control programs in Nicaragua, a problem that is largely related to individual noncompliance, lack of extensive drug susceptibility testing facilities, and a general unavailability of expensive anti-TB medications for re-treatment. Ongoing surveillance for drug resistance, using the methodology presented here, might assist Nicaraguan public health officials in their tuberculosis control programs.

*Antitubercular Agents/PHARMACOLOGY *Drug Resistance, Multiple *Mycobacterium tuberculosis/DRUG EFFECTS *Tuberculosis, Multidrug-Resistant/EPIDEMIOLOGY


Information in this article was accurate in June 30, 1997. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.