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Charles N.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Thomas B.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Watson B.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Raja Sakthivel M.,Tuberculosis Research Center | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2010

Introduction: With the creation of the Revised National TB Control Programme (RNTCP), tuberculosis services have become decentralized and more accessible. A 1997 study prior to RNTCP implementation reported that most chest symptomatics accessed first private health care facilities and a general dissatisfaction with government health facilities. The study was repeated post-RNTCP implementation to gain insight into the current care seeking behavior of chest symptomatics. Methodology: A cross-sectional community-based study carried out between March-August 2008 in 4 sites (2 rural [R] and 2 urban [U]) from the same two districts of Chennai and Madurai, southern India, as in the 1997 study. Six hundred and forty chest symptomatics were identified (R 314; U 326), and detailed interviews were done for 606 (R311; U295). Results: Prevalence of chest symptomatics in the urban and rural areas were 2.7% and 4.9% respectively (p<0.01), and was found to increase with age (Chi-square for trend, p<0.01). Longer delays in seeking care were seen amongst symptomatics above 45 years of age (p 0.01), and those who had taken previous TB treatment (p=0.05). Overall, 50% (222/444) of the chest symptomatics approached a government health care facility first (R 142 (61%); U 80 (38%), p =<0.001). This was significantly (p<0.001) more than were observed in the 1997 study, where only 38.4% approached a government facility first. Sixty two (28%) of the 222 made a second visit to a government facility (R26%; U31%), while 17% shifted to a private facility (R14%; U21%). Dissatisfaction with the health care facility was one of the major reasons expressed. Conclusions: It appears that the RNTCP has had an impact in the community with regard to the availability and accessibility of TB services in government health facilities. However the relatively high levels of subsequent shifting to private health facilities calls for urgent action to make government facilities more patients friendly with quality care facilities in the delivery of RNTCP services. © 2010 Charles et al. Source

Swaminathan S.,National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis Formerly Tuberculosis Research Center | Menon P.A.,National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis Formerly Tuberculosis Research Center | Gopalan N.,National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis Formerly Tuberculosis Research Center | Perumal V.,National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis Formerly Tuberculosis Research Center | And 10 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Background: The optimal duration of preventive therapy for tuberculosis (TB) among HIV-infected persons in TB-endemic countries is unknown. Methods: An open-label randomized clinical trial was performed and analyzed for equivalence. Seven hundred and twelve HIV-infected, ART-naïve patients without active TB were randomized to receive either ethambutol 800 mg and isoniazid 300 mg daily for six-months (6EH) or isoniazid 300 mg daily for 36-months (36H). Drugs were dispensed fortnightly and adherence checked by home visits. Patients had chest radiograph, sputum smear and culture performed every six months, in addition to investigations if they developed symptoms. The primary endpoint was incident TB while secondary endpoints were all-cause mortality and adverse events. Survival analysis was performed on the modified intent to treat population (m-ITT) and rates compared. Findings: Tuberculosis developed in 22 (6.4%) of 344 subjects in the 6EH arm and 13 (3.8%) of 339 subjects in the 36H arm with incidence rates of 2.4/100py (95%CI- 1.4-3.5) and 1.6/100py (95% CI-0.8-3.0) with an adjusted rate ratio (aIRR) of 1.6 (0.8-3.2). Among TST-positive subjects, the aIRR of 6EH was 1.7 (0.6-4.3) compared to 36H, p = 0.8. All-cause mortality and toxicity were similar in the two arms. Among 15 patients with confirmed TB, 4 isolates were resistant to isoniazid and 2 were multidrug-resistant. Interpretation: Both regimens were similarly effective in preventing TB, when compared to historical incidence rates. However, there was a trend to lower TB incidence with 36H. There was no increase in isoniazid resistance compared to the expected rate in HIV-infected patients. The trial is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT00351702. © 2012 Swaminathan et al. Source

Bhat J.,Regional Medical Research Center for Tribals | Selvakumar N.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Rao V.G.,Regional Medical Research Center for Tribals | Gopi P.G.,Tuberculosis Research Center | And 2 more authors.
International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease | Year: 2011

BACKGROUND: There is little information on the recovery of Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex from sputum samples collected in the field for bacteriological examination. SETTING: Tribal areas in the State of Madhya Pradesh, in central India. METHODS: Sputum specimens collected from subjects with chest symptoms in a disease prevalence survey were refrigerated until transportation to the laboratory. The specimens were processed for microscopy and culture. The samples were grouped based on the delay in processing for culture from the day of collection into three groups: 0-3, 4-7 and ≥8 days, and the recovery of M. tuberculosis complex in these groups was analysed. The statistical analysis was performed using χ2 test. RESULTS: Of the 3651 processed specimens, 114 were positive for M. tuberculosis complex by culture and 96 by smear microscopy. The differences in the proportion of 'smear-positive, culture-positive', 'smear-positive, culture-negative' and 'smear-negative, culture-positive' samples between the three groups were not significant. CONCLUSION: In difficult-to-reach areas with limited resources, refrigeration of sputum specimens until they are transported for processing at a reference laboratory for culture seems not to significantly affect the recovery of M. tuberculosis complex isolates. © 2011 The Union. Source

Suhadev M.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Thomas B.E.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Raja Sakthivel M.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Murugesan P.,Tuberculosis Research Center | And 6 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2011

Background: Alcohol Use Disorders (AUDs) among tuberculosis (TB) patients are associated with nonadherence and poor treatment outcomes. Studies from Tuberculosis Research Centre (TRC), Chennai have reported that alcoholism has been one of the major reasons for default and mortality in under the DOTS programme in South India. Hence, it is planned to conduct a study to estimate prevalence of alcohol use and AUDs among TB patients attending the corporation health centres in Chennai, India. Methodology: This is a cross-sectional cohort study covering 10 corporation zones at Chennai and it included situational assessment followed by screening of TB patients by a WHO developed Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test AUDIT scale. Four zones were randomly selected and all TB patients treated during July to September 2009 were screened with AUDIT scale for alcohol consumption. Results: Out of 490 patients, 66% were males, 66% were 35 years and above, 57% were married, 58% were from the low monthly income group of 8. Age (>35 years), education (less educated), income ( Source

Thomas B.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Suhadev M.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Mani J.,Tuberculosis Research Center | Ganapathy B.G.,Tuberculosis Research Center | And 4 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2011

Background: The negative influences of alcohol on TB management with regard to delays in seeking care as well as non compliance for treatment has been well documented. This study is part of a larger study on the prevalence of AUD (Alcohol Use Disorder) among TB patients which revealed that almost a quarter of TB patients who consumed alcohol could be classified as those who had AUD. However there is dearth of any effective alcohol intervention programme for TB patients with Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD). Methodology: This qualitative study using the ecological system model was done to gain insights into the perceived effect of alcohol use on TB treatment and perceived necessity of an intervention programme for TB patients with AUD. We used purposive sampling to select 44 men from 73 TB patients with an AUDIT score &8. Focus group discussions (FGDs) and interviews were conducted with TB patients with AUD, their family members and health providers. Results: TB patients with AUD report excessive alcohol intake as one of the reasons for their vulnerability for TB. Peer pressure has been reported by many as the main reason for alcohol consumption. The influences of alcohol use on TB treatment has been elaborated especially with regard to the fears around the adverse effects of alcohol on TB drugs and the fear of being reprimanded by health providers. The need for alcohol intervention programs was expressed by the TB patients, their families and health providers. Suggestions for the intervention programmes included individual and group sessions, involvement of family members, audiovisual aids and the importance of sensitization by health staff. Conclusions: The findings call for urgent need based interventions which need to be pilot tested with a randomized control trial to bring out a model intervention programme for TB patients with AUD. © 2011 Thomas et al. Source

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