Management of disease due to Mycobacterium kansasii

Clin Chest Med. 2002 Sep;23(3):613-21, vi. doi: 10.1016/s0272-5231(02)00016-3.


Mycobacterium kansasii presents clinically in a manner most resembling tuberculosis. Diagnosis is usually not difficult; however, the significance of M kansasii isolates from some patients may be hard to determine. Usually, the presence of even one respiratory culture positive for M kansasii is sufficient to make a diagnosis, though few patients can have single respiratory culture positive for M kansasii without evidence of active disease. If not started on medication, these patients must be followed closely. Effective treatment can usually be accomplished with a rifampin-based regimen, or a rifabutin-based regimen for HIV-seropositive patients receiving antiretroviral therapy. Short course and intermittent regimens for treating M kansaii disease show promise but are not yet recommended for routine use.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Antitubercular Agents / therapeutic use
  • Drug Resistance, Bacterial
  • Drug Therapy, Combination / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Mycobacterium Infections, Nontuberculous / diagnostic imaging
  • Mycobacterium Infections, Nontuberculous / drug therapy*
  • Mycobacterium Infections, Nontuberculous / microbiology
  • Mycobacterium kansasii / pathogenicity*
  • Radiography, Thoracic
  • Sputum / microbiology
  • Tuberculosis, Pulmonary / diagnostic imaging
  • Tuberculosis, Pulmonary / drug therapy*
  • Tuberculosis, Pulmonary / microbiology


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Antitubercular Agents