Treatment of Latent Tuberculosis Infection
Patient Guideline Summary
Publication Date: February 14, 2020
This patient summary means to discuss key recommendations from the National Tuberculosis Controllers Association the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for the treatment of latent tuberculosis infection.
- Tuberculosis (TB) is an infection that begins in the lungs and can spread throughout the body.
- One-fourth of the global population (approximately 2 billion persons) are estimated to be infected with tuberculosis.
- Most infected persons have no symptoms and are therefore classified as latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI).
- Treatment of LTBI is effective in preventing the progression into TB disease.
- We will use the abbreviation LTBI throughout this summary to refer to latent tuberculosis infection.
- Tuberculosis is spread by coughing.
- This patient summary focuses on treating latent tuberculosis infection.
- Latent tuberculosis is diagnosed by a TB skin test.
- The CDC recommends three treatment regimens and two alternatives containing one or two of these three medicines:
- The duration of treatment is between 3 and 9 months.
- The frequency is daily, weekly, or twice weekly.
- The choice of regimen and the dose depends on the age of the patient, the presence of HIV (human immunodeficiency virus), and the individual regimen.
- CDC: Centers For Disease Control And Prevention
- HIV: Human Immunodeficiency Virus
- LTBI: Latent Tuberculosis Infection
- TB: Tuberculosis
Sterling TR, Njie G, Zenner D, et al. Guidelines for the Treatment of Latent Tuberculosis Infection: Recommendations from the National Tuberculosis Controllers Association and CDC, 2020. MMWR Recomm Rep 2020;69(No. RR-1):1–11. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.rr6901a1
The information in this patient summary should not be used as a substitute for professional medical care or advice. Contact a health care provider if you have questions about your health.