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Books, Journals, New Media
February 13, 2002

Resistant TuberculosisTimebomb: The Global Epidemic of Multi-Drug Resistant Tuberculosis

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorDavid H.MorseMS, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


Not Available

JAMA. 2002;287(6):780-781. doi:10.1001/jama.287.6.780-JBK0213-2-1

I was particularly pleased to be asked to review this book on multiple-drug resistant tuberculosis (MDR TB), a problem that looms large throughout the world, including the United States. This opportunity recalled the exciting challenge of implementing a systematic retreatment program for isoniazid and streptomycin-resistant TB when I was a medical resident.1 My mentor, the late Roger S. Mitchell, one of the giants in the field of tuberculosis, who along with John Crofton had pioneered the use of triple therapy in the 1950s, thought that a combination of ethionamide and pyrazinamide, possibly with the continued use of isoniazid, could be effective in salvaging a growing number of MDR TB cases, which existed in the declining sanatorium system of Colorado. In those days, resistance to both isoniazid and streptomycin was the definition of MDR TB. The rifamycins had yet to be introduced. An early experience with ethambutol also convinced me that this oral drug had great promise in our armamentarium against both isoniazid-susceptible and resistant organisms.

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