WHO warns of drug-resistant TB

Sep 06, 2006

The World Health Organization in Switzerland has warned of a new strain of tuberculosis that is rapidly spreading and cannot be treated with current drugs.

The organization said the extreme drug-resistant TB, or XDR-TB, has been identified in the United States, Eastern Europe and Africa, reported Britain's The Guardian newspaper.

Paul Nunn, head of the WHO TB resistance team, said the organization estimates that about 180,000 of the 9 million cases of TB in the world could be XDR-TB.

"This is raising the specter of something that we have been worried might happen for a decade -- the possibility of virtually untreatable TB," Nunn told the newspaper.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control said in March that there had been 64 recorded cases of XDR-TB in the country and 21 of those infected had died.

The disease also has major implications for the antiretroviral drug treatment program being rolled out for AIDS patients across Africa, where a great number of those patients die from TB.

"There is no point in investing hugely in ARV programs if patients are going to die a few weeks later from extreme drug-resistant tuberculosis," Nunn said.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: A high-salt diet could protect against invading microbes

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Ancient wheat points to Stone Age trading links

49 minutes ago

(AP)—Britons may have discovered a taste for bread thousands of years earlier than previously thought, thanks to trade with more advanced neighbors on the European continent.

Bumblebees make false memories too

55 minutes ago

It's well known that our human memory can fail us. People can be forgetful, and they can sometimes also "remember" things incorrectly, with devastating consequences in the classroom, courtroom, and other ...

Recommended for you

Severe obesity in youth even riskier than thought

28 minutes ago

(HealthDay)—Extremely obese children—such as those at least 100 pounds overweight—are in deeper trouble in terms of cardiovascular disease risks than doctors have thought, new research suggests. The ...

FDA issues warning on men's testosterone drugs

50 minutes ago

The Food and Drug Administration is warning doctors against the overuse of testosterone-boosting drugs for men, saying the popular treatments have never been established as safe or effective for treating common signs of aging ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.