Share this Article
Chee CBE, KhinMar KW, Cutter J, Wang YT
Correspondence: Cynthia BE Chee, firstname.lastname@example.org
The global emergence of multidrug-resistant (MDR) tuberculosis (TB) and extensively drugresistant (XDR)-TB threatens to derail the efforts of TB control programmes worldwide. From 2000 to 2010, 161 pulmonary MDR-TB cases (including six XDR-TB cases) were reported in Singapore, and of these, 80% occurred among the foreign-born, with an increasing trend seen after 2004. Among new pulmonary TB cases, the highest incidence of MDR-TB occurred among patients from Myanmar (8%), followed by Vietnam (4.4%) and China (2.3%), while among those previously treated, the highest incidence was found in patients from Vietnam (50%), followed by Indonesia (33%) and Bangladesh (33%). Although the proportion of Singapore-born pulmonary TB cases with MDR-TB has remained comparatively low (0.2% and 1.3% in new and previously treated cases, respectively), there is no room for complacency. Top priority must be accorded toward the proper treatment of drug-susceptible TB cases under strict programme conditions so as to prevent the development of MDR-TB in the first place.
Keywords: extensively drug-resistant-TB, foreign-born, multidrug-resistant-TB, Singapore, TB programme
Singapore Med J 2012; 53(4): 238-240