By D. A. Christie, E. M. Tansey (Editors)
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Extra info for Short-course Chemotherapy for Tuberculosis (Wellcome Witnesses to Twentieth Century Medicine Vol 24)
36 Crofton (1960); Ross et al. (1958). Short-course Chemotherapy for Tuberculosis But nobody knew how long to go on to prevent relapse. Naturally, some gave fairly short-term treatment to milder cases and long term to the really severe. J D (Ian) Ross looked at our relapse rate a year or two later. 37 We had no relapses in those given 18 months or more. 39 Their findings correlated very well with the relapse rates. For instance, in patients operated after 12–18 months’ chemotherapy the relapse rate proved to be 1 per cent; cultures were positive in only 2 per cent.
I don’t know about my other colleagues of similar vintage, of whom there are some about still. Had there been a high relapse rate in Britain in standard practice? Has Janet [Darbyshire] any data on this from the survey she did before? Because it seemed to me that it worked in Britain quite well. Now that’s anecdotal and I didn’t conduct any surveys. Dr Kenneth Citron: If you cast your mind back to the 1960s and 1970s, we had many tuberculosis nurses, we had well-staffed clinics, and therefore we could monitor self-administered drugs extremely efficiently.
My general impression, going round Third World countries was a 40 per cent cure rate, which most of them were getting. This seemed to improve dramatically with the short-course chemotherapy because there were fewer defaulters, but there were no accurate figures. 43 In contrast, well-supervised and completed therapy, short-course or long-term, both gave very low relapse rates. Perhaps I could add one other thing? Short-course chemotherapy was initiated at a stage when the relevant drugs were very expensive.
Short-course Chemotherapy for Tuberculosis (Wellcome Witnesses to Twentieth Century Medicine Vol 24) by D. A. Christie, E. M. Tansey (Editors)