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Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis (MDR TB)
and Possible Effective Treatments

Multidrug-Resistant TB (MDR TB) illustration

MDR TB occurs when a Mycobacterium tuberculosis strain is resistant to isoniazid and rifampin, two of the most powerful first-line drugs. To cure MDR TB, healthcare providers must turn to a combination of second-line drugs, several of which are shown here. Click here to see how these drugs work. Second-line drugs may have more side effects, the treatment may last much longer, and the cost may be up to 100 times more than first-line therapy. MDR TB strains can also grow resistant to second-line drugs, further complicating treatment.

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Drug-Resistant TB—A Visual Tour

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Photo Credit: The photo of Mycobacterium tuberculosis was obtained from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC/ Dr. Ray Butler; Janice Carr.
Illustration Credit: This illustration is in the public domain. Please credit the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).
Illustrator: Krista Townsend

Last Updated May 22, 2007