Setting: All bacteriologically confirmed new cases of tuberculosis and treatment relapses in Denmark are examined for drug resistance. In the years 1993-1995, nine cases of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB), all acquired outside Denmark, were identified among 1354 cases of tuberculosis.
Objective: To examine incidence, treatment and prognosis for patients with tuberculosis due to MDR Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
Design: Retrospective evaluation of routine data.
Results and conclusion: Multidrug resistance was present in less than one present of patients with tuberculosis. One patient died from tuberculosis without revision of treatment, and eight patients responded favourably to a regimen of pyrazinamide, streptomycin or amikacin, ofloxacin and cycloserine. In two patients, this regimen was supplemented with para-aminosalicylic acid and thiacetazone respectively. All patients needed prolonged hospitalization and had observed treatment. It is possible to cure such patients, but it is a lengthy and expensive process. It is expected that similar cases will be imported into the country and that they will occur within Denmark in the future.