Despite global efforts to control it, tuberculosis (TB) remains an urgent issue in all areas of the world, including the most developed nations. The emergence of the HIV epidemic and its impact on TB epidemiology, multidrug-resistant strains, malnutrition, poverty, and growing concentration of populations in urban centers, are all factors that make TB difficult to control. Worldwide, TB is second only to HIV as a cause of death resulting from a single infectious agent. Prior to the era of effective chemotherapy, treatment for TB was confined to isolation, sanatorium regimens, and surgical intervention for cavity closure and resection of the affected lung lobe. Isoniazid (INH) appeared in 1952 and rifampicin or rifampin (RMP) in 1970; however, TB is far from controlled at the time of this writing.
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