Alabama physicians co-author study of groundbreaking TB treatment

Dr. Edward KhanIn 2021, an estimated 10.6 million people developed tuberculosis (TB) and 1.6 million died from the disease worldwide. About 450,000 individuals with the infection are resistant to drugs used to treat TB; however, treatment for drug-resistant TB has been transformed. The new all-oral regimen requires less than half the previously recommended time and is safe and effective.

Two of the department's physicians were among the co-authors of a major study in the May 30 issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases describing this innovative treatment. The late Asharaf Edward “Ed” Khan, MD (pictured), of the Jefferson County Department of Health and Chief Medical Officer Karen Landers, MD, FAAP, were among the co-authors the study titled “Implementation of Bpal in the United States: Experience using a novel all-oral treatment regimen for treatment of rifampin-resistant or rifampin-intolerant TB disease.”

A published editorial commentary in the same issue praises the transformative treatment. Preventive TB treatment protects both the individual patient and the community at large from developing TB disease.

A TB and disease control expert, Dr. Khan passed away in June 2022.