Risk factors that may be driving the emergence of drug resistance in tuberculosis patients treated in Yangon, MyanmarReport as inadecuate

Risk factors that may be driving the emergence of drug resistance in tuberculosis patients treated in Yangon, Myanmar - Download this document for free, or read online. Document in PDF available to download.


The majority of new tuberculosis cases emerging every year occur in low and middle-income countries where public health systems are often characterised by weak infrastructure and inadequate resources. This study investigates healthcare seeking behaviour, knowledge and treatment of tuberculosis patients in Myanmar—which is facing an acute drug-resistant tuberculosis epidemic—and identifies factors that may increase the risk of emergence of drug-resistant tuberculosis.


We randomly selected adult smear-positive pulmonary tuberculosis patients diagnosed between September 2014 and March 2015 at ten public township health centres in Yangon, the largest city in Myanmar. Data on patients’ healthcare seeking behaviour, treatment at the township health centres, co-morbidities and knowledge was collected through patient interviews and extraction from hospital records. A retrospective descriptive cross-sectional analysis was conducted.


Of 404 TB patients selected to participate in the study, 11 had died since diagnosis, resulting in 393 patients being included in the final analysis. Results indicate that a high proportion of patients 16%; 95% CI = 13–20 did not have a treatment supporter assigned to improve adherence to medication, with men being more likely to have no treatment supporter assigned. Use of private healthcare providers was very common; 59% 54–64 and 30.3% 25.9–35.0 of patients reported first seeking care at private clinics and pharmacies respectively. We found that 8% 6–11 of tuberculosis patients had confirmed diabetes. Most patients had some knowledge about tuberculosis transmission and the consequences of missing treatment. However, 5% 3–8 stated that they miss taking tuberculosis medicines at least weekly, and patients with no knowledge of consequences of missing treatment were more likely to miss doses.


This study analysed healthcare seeking behaviour and treatment related practices of tuberculosis patients being managed under operational conditions in a fragile health system. Findings indicate that ensuring that treatment adherence support is arranged for all patients, monitoring of response to treatment among the high proportion of tuberculosis patients with diabetes and engagement with private healthcare providers could be strategies addressed to reduce the risk of emergence of drug-resistant tuberculosis.

Author: Mishal S. Khan , Coll Hutchison, Richard J. Coker

Source: http://plos.srce.hr/


Related documents