Tuberculosis treatment Outcomes of Six and Eight Month Treatment Regimens in Districts of Southwestern Ethiopia: A Comparative Cross-sectional Study

Journal Article
  • Abyot Asres
  • Degu Jerene
  • Wakgari Deressa
BMC Infectious Diseases
Nov. 2016; 16: 653. DOI: 10.1186/s12879-016-1917-0.



A switch of continuation phase tuberculosis (TB) treatment regimen from Ethambutol (E) and Isoniazid (H) combination for 6 months (6EH) to Rifampicin (R) and Isoniazid (H) combination for 4 months (4RH) was recommended. However, the effect of the regimen switch in Ethiopian setting is not known.


A comparative cross-sectional study among 790 randomly selected new cases of TB (395 each treated with 4RH and 6EH during the continuation phase) was conducted in nine health centers and one hospital in three zones in southwestern Ethiopia. Data were abstracted from the standard unit TB register composed of standard case and treatment outcome definitions. Data were analyzed using STATA version 13 where binary logistic regression was fitted to identify independent predictors of unsuccessful treatment outcomes at 5 % significance level.


Over all, 695 (88%) of the patients had a successful treatment outcome with statistically significant difference (85.3 % vs 90.6 %, p = 0.02) among the 6HE and 4RH regimens, respectively. After adjusting for confounders, 4RH continuation phase treatment regimen adjusted odds ratio (AOR) [(95 % confidence interval (CI)) 0.55 (0.34,0.89)], age [AOR (95 % CI 1.02 (1.001,1.022)], rural residence [AOR (95 % CI) 2.1 (1.18,3.75)] Human Immunodeficiency virus (HIV) positives [AOR (95 % CI) 2.39 (1.12,5.07)] and increased weight at the end of the second month [AOR (95 % CI 0.28 (0.11,0.72)] independently predicted treatment outcome.


The switch of continuation phase TB treatment regimen from 6EH to 4RH has brought better treatment outcomes which imply applicability of the recommendation in high prevalent and resource constrained settings. Therefore, it should be maintained and augmented through further studies on its impact among the older, rural residents and HIV positives.