USA, Canada. The American Thoracic Society and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend that the combined regimen of pyrazinamide and rifampicin should not be offered as a first-line treatment to persons with latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI). This advice follows a recent CDC report describing high rates of hospitalisation and death from liver injury following the combined use of these two drugs in LTBI patients1. The CDC advises the use of alternative recommended regimens in LTBI. Health Canada has made a similar announcement, based on the CDC findings and directives2. Health Canada advises that recommendations for the treatment of active TB remain unchanged3.
1. MMWR 52(31): 735-739, 8 August 2003. Available from URL: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5231a4.htm
2. ‘Dear Healthcare Professional’ letter from Pharmascience Inc and ICN Canada Limited, 12 December 2003. Available from URL: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca