Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis infection and disease in children: a review of new and repurposed drugs

Ther Adv Infect Dis. 2019 Jul 19;6:2049936119864737. doi: 10.1177/2049936119864737. eCollection Jan-Dec 2019.


The World Health Organization estimates that 10 million new cases of tuberculosis (TB) occurred worldwide in 2017, of which 600,000 were rifampicin or multidrug-resistant (RR/MDR) TB. Modelling estimates suggest that 32,000 new cases of MDR-TB occur in children annually, but only a fraction of these are correctly diagnosed and treated. Accurately diagnosing TB in children, who usually have paucibacillary disease, and implementing effective TB prevention and treatment programmes in resource-limited settings remain major challenges. In light of the underappreciated RR/MDR-TB burden in children, and the lack of paediatric data on newer drugs for TB prevention and treatment, we present an overview of new and repurposed TB drugs, describing the available evidence for safety and efficacy in children to assist clinical care and decision-making.

Keywords: MDR-TB treatment; bedaquiline; delamanid; drug-resistant tuberculosis; fluoroquinolones; preventive therapy; tuberculosis infection.

Publication types

  • Review