TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2016

Johns Hopkins treats drug-resistant TB in young child

US hospital treats drug-resistant TB patient | Courtesy of cdc.gov

A 2-year-old child with drug-resistant tuberculosis (TB) recently received successful treatment at Johns Hopkins Children's Center in Baltimore.

Health professionals report that the child had a highly virulent strain of extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB). 

XDR-TB is known for the shift nature of its bacterium, evading drugs and threatening the life of the patient, and this case demonstrated the need to further understand TB in the pediatric field. 

"Many factors made this a challenging case, including how physicians would monitor on a timely basis whether the drugs had reduced or eliminated the bacteria," Antonio Sastre, program director at the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, said. "The effective use of CT monitoring was first shown in the laboratory with mice, and low-radiation CT imaging has provided a readily translatable solution for this case."

Because drug-resistant TB is especially challenging in cases involving children, efficient drugs are difficult to find. There have only been a few cases involving children in which treatment has been successful.

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