Tuberculosis Research and Treatment
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Acceptance rate31%
Submission to final decision108 days
Acceptance to publication19 days
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Mycobacterial Lineages Associated with Drug Resistance in Patients with Extrapulmonary Tuberculosis in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

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Tuberculosis Research and Treatment publishes original research articles and review articles related to all aspects of tuberculosis, from the immunological basis of disease to translational and clinical research.

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Research Article

Treatment Outcomes and Associated Factors in Tuberculosis Patients at Atwima Nwabiagya District, Ashanti Region, Ghana: A Ten-Year Retrospective Study

Introduction. Tuberculosis poses a great threat to public health around the globe and affects persons mostly in their productive age, notwithstanding; everyone is susceptible to tuberculosis (TB) infection. To assess the effectiveness and performance of the tuberculosis control program activities, the percentage of cases with treatment success outcome is key. To control tuberculosis, interrupting transmission through effective treatment cannot be overemphasized. The study was conducted to determine factors associated with TB treatment outcome, in the Atwima Nwabiagya District from 2007–2017. Method. A Retrospective review of routine/standard TB registers was carried out in five directly observed therapy short-course (DOTS) centres at the Atwima Nwabiagya District from January 2007 to December 2017. Demographic characteristics, clinical characteristics, and treatment outcomes were assessed. Bivariate and multivariate logistic regression was conducted to determine the predictors of successful treatment outcome. Results. Of the 891 TB client’s data that was assessed in the district, the treatment success rate was 68.46%. Patients, years (adjusted odds ratio , ) and 51-60 years (, ), having a pretreatment weight of 35-45 kg (, ), 46-55 kg (, ) and 56-65 kg (, ) were associated with treatment success. However, retreatment patients (, ) resulted in unsuccessful treatment outcome. Conclusion. Successful treatment outcome among TB patients was about 20.00% and 30.00% lower compared to the national average treatment success rate and WHO target, respectively. Active monitoring, motivation, and counselling of retreatment patients and patients with advanced age are key to treatment success.

Research Article

Diversity of Mycobacterium tuberculosis Complex Lineages Associated with Pulmonary Tuberculosis in Southwestern, Uganda

Uganda is among the 22 countries in the world with a high burden of tuberculosis. The southwestern region of the country has consistently registered a high TB/HIV incidence rate. This study is aimed at characterizing the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC) genotypic diversity in southwestern Uganda. A total of 283 sputum samples from patients with pulmonary tuberculosis were genotyped using specific single nucleotide polymorphism markers for lineages 3 and 4. Most of the patients were males with a mean age of 34. The lineage 4 Ugandan family was found to be the most dominant strains accounting for 59.7% of all cases followed by lineage 3 at 15.2%. The lineage 4 non-Ugandan family accounted for 14.5% of all cases while 4.2% showed amplification for both lineage 4 and lineage 3. Eighteen samples (6.4%) of the strains remained unclassified since they could not be matched to any lineage based on the genotyping technique used. This study demonstrates that a wide diversity of strains is causing pulmonary tuberculosis in this region with those belonging to the lineage 4 Ugandan family being more predominant. However, to confirm this, further studies using more discriminative genotyping methods are necessary.

Research Article

Engaging Informal Private Health Care Providers for TB Case Detection: Experiences from RIPEND Project in India

Background. Informal (unqualified) health care providers are an important source of medical care for persons with presumptive TB (PPTB) in India. A project (titled RIPEND) was implemented to engage informal providers for the identification of PPTBs and TB patients in 4 districts of Telangana State, India, during October 2018-December 2019 project period. Engagement involved sensitizing the informal providers about TB, providing them financial incentives to identify PPTBs, and linking these PPTBs to diagnostic and treatment services provided by the Government of India’s National TB Elimination Programme. Objectives. To describe (a) the characteristics of the informal providers, along with their self-reported practices on TB diagnosis, treatment, and challenges encountered by the RIPEND project staff in engaging them in the project and (b) the outputs and outcomes of this engagement. Methods. We used a combination of one-on-one interviews with informal providers, group interviews with RIPEND project staff, and secondary analysis of data available within the project’s recording and reporting systems. Results. A total of 555 informal providers were actively engaged under the project. The majority (87%) had a nonmedicine-related graduate degree and had been providing medical care for more than 10 years. Most (95%) were aware that a cough for 2 weeks or more is a symptom of pulmonary TB and that such patients should be referred for sputum-smear microscopy at a government health facility. Challenges in engaging the informal providers included motivating them to participate in the study, suboptimal mobile usage for referral services, and delays in providing financial incentives to them for referring PPTBs. During the project period (October 2018-December 2019), 8342 PPTBs were identified of which 1003 TB patients were detected and linked to TB treatment services. Conclusion. This project showed that engaging informal providers is feasible and that a large number of PPTB and TB patients can be identified through this effort. The Government of India should consider engaging informal providers for the early diagnosis of TB to reduce the missing TB cases in the country.

Research Article

Tuberculosis Drug Susceptibility, Treatment, and Outcomes for Belarusian HIV-Positive Patients with Tuberculosis: Results from a National and International Laboratory

Background. To cure drug-resistant (DR) tuberculosis (TB), the antituberculous treatment should be guided by Mycobacterium tuberculosis drug-susceptibility testing (DST). In this study, we compared conventional DST performed in Minsk, Belarus, a TB DR high-burden country, with extensive geno- and phenotypic analyses performed at the WHO TB Supranational Reference Laboratory in Copenhagen, Denmark, for TB/HIV coinfected patients. Subsequently, DST results were related to treatment regimen and outcome. Methods. Thirty TB/HIV coinfected patients from Minsk were included and descriptive statistics applied. Results. Based on results from Minsk, 10 (33%) TB/HIV patients had drug-sensitive TB. Two (7%) had isoniazid monoresistant TB, 8 (27%) had multidrug-resistant (MDR) TB, 5 (17%) preextensive drug-resistant (preXDR) TB, and 5 (17%) had extensive drug-resistant (XDR) TB. For the first-line drugs rifampicin and isoniazid, there was DST agreement between Minsk and Copenhagen for 90% patients. For the second-line anti-TB drugs, discrepancies were more pronounced. For 14 (47%) patients, there were disagreements for at least one drug, and 4 (13%) patients were classified as having MDR-TB in Minsk but were classified as having preXDR-TB based on DST results in Copenhagen. Initially, all patients received standard anti-TB treatment with rifampicin, isoniazid, pyrazinamide, and ethambutol. However, this was only suitable for 40% of the patients based on DST. On average, DR-TB patients were changed to 4 (IQR 3-5) active drugs after 1.5 months (IQR 1-2). After treatment adjustment, the treatment duration was 8 months (IQR 2-11). Four (22%) patients with DR-TB received treatment for >18 months. In total, sixteen (53%) patients died during 24 months of follow-up. Conclusions. We found high concordance for rifampicin and isoniazid DST between the Minsk and Copenhagen laboratories, whereas discrepancies for second-line drugs were more pronounced. For patients with DR-TB, treatment was often insufficient and relevant adjustments delayed. This example from Minsk, Belarus, underlines two crucial points in the management of DR-TB: the urgent need for implementation of rapid molecular DSTs and availability of second-line drugs in all DR-TB high-burden settings. Carefully designed individualized treatment regimens in accordance with DST patterns will likely improve patients’ outcome and reduce transmission with drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains.

Research Article

Factors Influencing Adherence to Tuberculosis Treatment in the Ketu North District of the Volta Region, Ghana

Annually, ten million cases of tuberculosis (TB) and about 1.8 million mortalities are recorded. Adherence to TB treatment not only reduces death outcomes but prevents prolonged sickness, transmission to others, and the development of multidrug-resistant TB. This study is aimed at determining the rate of treatment adherence, knowledge of TB infection, and the possible factors influencing adherence to TB treatment in the Ketu North District in the Volta Region of Ghana. A cross-sectional study design was employed. A semistructured questionnaire was used to obtain data from respondents. Adherence to TB treatment and knowledge level about TB infection were assessed. A Chi-square test analysis was used to determine the variables that were associated with treatment adherence. Logistic regression analysis was used to determine potential factors that contribute to treatment adherence. A total of 125 TB registrants were enrolled in the study. The majority (102 (81.6%)) adhered to the TB treatment regimen. However, the level of knowledge about night sweat being a symptom of TB infection was relatively low (78 (62.4%)). Logistic regression analysis revealed that the male gender was about three times more likely (, ; ) to be associated with adherence to TB treatment. However, food availability (, 95% CI (0.848-5.753); ) and household size (, 95% CI (0.195-1.483); ) were not significantly associated with treatment adherence. In this study, adherence to TB treatment and the knowledge level of TB infection were high. However, the knowledge level of night sweat being a symptom of TB infection was relatively low. Being a male was significantly associated with treatment adherence. An intensified health education on the symptoms of TB infection is therefore recommended.

Research Article

Accuracy and Incremental Yield of the Chest X-Ray in Screening for Tuberculosis in Uganda: A Cross-Sectional Study

The WHO END TB strategy requires ≥90% case detection to combat tuberculosis (TB). Increased TB case detection requires a more sensitive and specific screening tool. Currently, the symptoms recommended for screening TB have been found to be suboptimal since up to 44% of individuals with TB are asymptomatic. The chest X-ray (CXR) as a screening tool for pulmonary TB was evaluated in this study, as well as its incremental yield in TB diagnosis using a cross-sectional study involving secondary analysis of data of 4512 consented/assented participants ≥15 years who participated in the Uganda National TB prevalence survey between 2014 and 2015. Participants with a cough ≥2 weeks, fever, weight loss, and night sweats screened positive for TB using the symptoms screening method, while participants with a TB defining abnormality on CXR screened positive for TB by the CXR screening method. The Löwenstein-Jensen (LJ) culture was used as a gold standard for TB diagnosis. The CXR had 93% sensitivity and 65% specificity compared to LJ culture results, while symptoms had 76% sensitivity and 31% specificity. The screening algorithm involving the CXR in addition to symptoms led to a 38% increment in the yield of diagnosed tuberculosis. The number needed to screen using the CXR and symptoms screening algorithm was 32 compared to 45 when the symptoms are used alone. Therefore, the CXR in combination with symptoms is a good TB screening tool and increases the yield of diagnosed TB.

Tuberculosis Research and Treatment
 Journal metrics
Acceptance rate31%
Submission to final decision108 days
Acceptance to publication19 days
CiteScore-
Journal Citation Indicator-
Impact Factor-
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