TB to be a real burden

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According to a recent study published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases, by 2040, one-third of tuberculosis (TB) cases in Russia could be drug resistant.

The study, catchily entitled Estimating the future burden of multidrug-resistant and extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis in India, the Philippines, Russia, and South Africa: a mathematical modelling study, confirmed that multidrug-resistant (MDR) and extensively drug-resistant (XDR) strains of TB are emerging worldwide.

It forecasts that the percentage of MDR tuberculosis among incident cases of tuberculosis could increase, reaching 12.4 per cent in India, 8.9 per cent in the Philippines, 32.5 per cent in Russia, and 5.7 per cent in South Africa by 2040.

According to the study, these increases are forecast despite improvements in acquired drug resistance shown by the Green Light Committee-supported programmatic management of drug-resistant tuberculosis.

Another prediction from the study was that growing drug resistance in high-burden countries will mostly result from person-to-person infections, rather than from non-resistant strains acquiring resistance.

The researchers confirmed that additional control efforts beyond improving acquired drug resistance rates are needed to stop the spread of MDR and XDR tuberculosis in countries with a high burden of MDR tuberculosis.