Drug Resistance is a major challenge in the control of Tuberculosis which itself remains a global public health problem. Resistance is commonly encountered as MDR TB but a subset, XDR TB which has about a comparatively fivefold increase in mortality is now identified in 84 countries worldwide and increasing rates are currently reported from 65 countries. The actual burden of MDR TB is unknown though estimates have been made based on notification of cases which are usually underreported. More so there is under diagnosis in non HIV immune suppressed adults and pediatric populations largely due to lack of readily accessible diagnostic tools. In some case series, MDR TB has been found occurring mostly in newly diagnosed patients or relapse cases after previous cure and completion of treatment rather than in patients with improperly treated disease. Clinical and laboratory monitoring once therapy has been instituted have also been a daunting task both from institutional and patient points of view. The impact of these factors are highlighted and discussed as the world moves towards attainment of the 2015 global target to halve TB prevalence and death rates within the context of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
Part of the book: An Overview of Tropical Diseases