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Confirmed cases of TB resistant to drugs

Published By United Press International
MUMBAI, India, May 3 (UPI Asia) –Tests on eight patients of tuberculosis in India have confirmed that the virus is resistant to all known drugs, a leading newspaper reported Thursday.

The confirmation has come from the National Tuberculosis Institute at Bangalore, 840km south of Mumbai, the Hindustan Times said.

The institute tested the patients after the Hinduja Hospital here claimed in January that 12 of its patients had totally drug-resistant tuberculosis, or TDR. These eight patients were among the 12 reported with TDR.

The state government forwarded the samples to the New Delhi-based Central TB Division on April 19, which monitors the outbreak of the disease across the country. The division in turn sent the samples to the Bangalore institute this week.

The World Health Organization rejects that there is such a thing as totally drug-resistant TB.

The Hindustan Times report said that resistance to every TB drug develops because of wrong treatment of multi-drug resistant and extensively drug resistant tuberculosis. Three of the 12 Hinduja Hospital patients have died this year.

A team of experts from the Central TB Division visited the patients in Mumbai, and said these patients were now suffering from extremely drug-resistant tuberculosis. Samples of the four other patients were destroyed, thought the newspaper did not say why.

"We will place this report on record before the DOTS+ (Directly Observed Treatment Shortcourse Plus) committee that deals with drug-resistant TB and figure out the line of treatment that could be offered to these patients now," Maharashtra state TB officer P. Y. Gaikwad told the newspaper.

Six of the eight patients are from Mumbai. Five of them are being treated under a special government project named Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program.
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