November 23, 2015 – Child TB


Anchor lead: What can a case of TB in a young child teach us in the United States? Elizabeth Tracey reports

A case of extremely drug-resistant tuberculosis, or XDR-TB, in a young child has been successfully treated by a team of physicians led by Sanjay Jain at Johns Hopkins.  The case report is published in the Lancet Infectious Diseases, and Jain says that while the team is very happy about the outcome it brings awareness to a number of issues.

Jain: It’s amazing.  It’s also humbling.  The bottom line is we’re glad the child is doing very well, but this is a wake up call. TB in general, but I think more so TB in young children, is underdiagnosed.  People don’t really know how tough it is to treat and to monitor young patients.  It’s a very different ball game than adults, that was the wake up call. That this can happen here in the United States, and in the United States where we have a lot of resources it was so tough for us to treat and monitor this patient.   :30

Jain says children are not young adults, and research specific to them is needed with regard to tuberculosis recognition, treatment and monitoring.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.