Totally Drug Resistant Tuberculosis Strain

drug-resistant-tb-in india

The LA Times, AP, and other media outlets are reporting that a dozen people are infected in India by a 100% drug resistant strain of Tuberculosis. All antibiotics are having no apparent affect on the lung disease.

Over time, TB-causing bacteria have become resistant to more and more types of antibiotics — and, now, apparently, ALL antibiotics.

Officials fear that what they’ve seen so far is just the beginning, and that many more cases are lurking undetected.

“Short of quarantining them in hospitals with isolation facilities till they become non-infectious – which is not practical or possible – there is nothing else one can do to prevent transmission.”

Source: LA Times

The Indian hospital that saw the initial cases tested a dozen medicines and none of them worked, a pretty comprehensive assessment. A TB expert at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said they do appear to be totally resistant to available drugs.

An estimated 20 percent of the world’s multi-drug-resistant cases are found in India, which is home to a quarter of all types of tuberculosis cases worldwide.


What is tuberculosis (TB)?

Tuberculosis (TB) is a bacterial disease caused by germs that are spread from person to person through the air. TB usually affects the lungs. Other parts of the body can also be affected, for example lymph nodes, kidneys, bones, or joints. In most cases, TB is treatable; however, persons with TB can die if they do not get proper treatment.

The symptoms of TB include a low-grade fever, night sweats, fatigue, weight loss and a persistent cough. Some people may not have obvious symptoms.

Most people infected with the germ that causes TB never develop active TB. If active TB does develop, it can occur two to three months after infection or years later.



An ongoing and increasing health risk in today’s modern world is transmissible disease spread rapidly by air travel. Unknowing carriers can spread disease before even realizing they themselves are infected, a process which could speed up exponentially as time progresses.

As this world becomes more ‘global’, so do the risks. Be aware of this, particularly in public.


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  1. White Shoe Boy 01/17/2012

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