Study sheds new light on TB and its ‘deadly twin’

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Study sheds new light on TB and its ‘deadly twin’

A new survey of co-infected patients provides a better insight into the causes of death

Journalist

SA ranks among the worst-afflicted nations in the world for what in the medical field has become known as the “deadly twins” – HIV and tuberculosis – which have left many families grieving.

Despite advances in diagnostics and the availability of treatment, TB remains the number-one killer in the country, with the co-infection rate soaring to more than 60%.

But a new local study that analysed hospital deaths of co-infected patients has provided a better insight into the causes of death among TB patients. The investigation of almost 600 patients in Khayelitsha District Hospital suggests that the spread of TB in the body, sepsis and resistance to TB’s first-line drug, rifampicin, resulted in the most deaths...

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