Whether tuberculosis patients received short-course chemotherapy with treatment of isoniazid (INH) and rifampicin (RIF), combined or not with pyrazinamide (PZA) and ethambutol (EMB) or streptomycin (SM), or long term chemotherapy with INH, SM and thiacetazone (Tb1), the rate of sputum culture conversion was similar in HIV-positive and HIV-negative patients. To prevent relapses it was recommended to treat patients for a minimum of 9 months and for at least 6 months after culture conversion, or even to administer INH for life after the end of treatment. However, no difference was observed in the percentage of relapses between HIV-positive and HIV-negative patients. Side-effects were observed in approximately 20% of HIV-positive patients treated with INH + RIF + PZA + EMB (or SM) or with INH + SM + Tb1, Tb1 being responsible for epidermal necrolysis, in some cases fatal. The mean survival of HIV-patients with tuberculosis was from 10 to 18 months after the diagnosis of tuberculosis. Other opportunistic infections could have been the main cause of death. Acquired drug resistance is not a common complication of tuberculosis treatment in HIV-positive patients, but several epidemics of nosocomial transmission of multiple drug-resistant tuberculosis have recently been observed in the USA. Sparfloxacin, a new fluoroquinolone with a long half-life and low MIC (0.25-0.50 mg/l) against Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is a promising drug against tuberculosis.