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Free Content Results of directly observed treatment for tuberculosis in Ensenada, Mexico: not all DOTS programs are created equally

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SETTING: Tuberculosis (TB) program in Ensenada, Mexico.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the impact of the DOTS strategy on adherence and cure rates in everyday practice.

DESIGN: Retrospective analysis of 629 patients diagnosed with TB.

MEASUREMENTS AND RESULTS: A total of 70% of the patients under directly observed treatment (DOT) were cured vs. 72.8% of those under self-administered treatment (SAT, P = 0.57). There was no difference on the length of therapy according to treatment regimen (4.82 ± 2.41 for DOT vs. 4.93 ± 2.16 for SAT, P = 0.61); 16.8% of patients under DOT abandoned treatment vs. 14.1% in the SAT group (P = 0.40). Logistic regression analysis confirmed the previous findings, with length of treatment under 6 months being the strongest predictive variable for treatment failure (OR 18.8, P < 0.00). The type of regimen (DOT vs. SAT) was not predictive of treatment failure (OR for failure for SAT regimen 0.65, P = 0.14).

CONCLUSIONS: Cure and completion of treatment rates in our population under study did not differ significantly when comparing DOT vs. SAT. Those in charge of the DOTS programs in a given country need to assess which are the most important ingredients for success in their particular program.
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Keywords: DOT; Mexico; results; treatment; tuberculosis

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: Graduate School of Public Health, Universidad Autónoma de Baja California, Tijuana, México

Publication date: 01 March 2007

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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