To evaluate their treatment outcomes 170 human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) seropositive and 597 HIV seronegative patients with active pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) treated for 1 yr with "standard" chemotherapy, including streptomycin, isoniazid, and, in most cases, thiacetazone, were traced at completion of therapy. All 582 survivors were invited for reevaluation, and 385 patients, of whom 82 (21.3%) were HIV seropositive, were evaluated. Of those, 325 consenting patients, of whom 67 (20.6%) were HIV seropositive, were followed for 12 months. One year after TB had been diagnosed 47 (31.3%) of the 150 HIV seropositive and 22 (4.4%) of the 501 HIV seronegative patients traced had died (p = 10(-6]. During the subsequent year the mortality of 67 HIV seropositive patients (26.3/100 patient-years) was higher than that of the 303 HIV seronegative patients (2.2/100 patients-years, p = 10(-6]. HIV seropositive patients had a higher overall TB therapy failure rate 24 months after the diagnosis of TB than did HIV seronegative patients (21.1/100 patient-years versus 8.1/100 patient-years, p = 0.002), mainly because their relapse rate of pulmonary TB (18.1/100 patient-years) was higher than that of HIV seronegative patients (6.0/100 patient-years, p = 0.03). Given their higher relapse rate after 1 yr of "standard" chemotherapy, the public health impact of routine maintenance therapy in HIV seropositive patients with pulmonary TB who complete such therapy should be assessed in comparison to the introduction of rifampicin-based short-course antituberculosis chemotherapy in developing countries.