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Applying patient centered approach in management of pulmonary tuberculosis: A case report from Malaysia

Keywords: Pulmonary tuberculosis , patient centered approach , treatment outcome , itchiness non-sedative anti histamines.

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A 24 year university student with history of productive cough was registered as sputum smear confirmed case of pulmonary tuberculosis. During treatment, patient suffered from itchiness associated with anti tuberculosis drugs and was treated with chlorpheniramine (4mg) tablet. Patient missed twenty eight doses of anti tuberculosis drugsin continuation phase claiming that he was very busy in his studies and assignments. Upon questioning he further explained that he was quite healthy after five months and unable to concentrate on his studies after taking prescribed medicines. His treatment was stopped based on clinical improvement, although he did not complete six months therapy. Two major reasons; false perception of being completely cured and side effects associated with anti TB drugs might be responsible for non adherence. Non sedative anti histamines like fexofenadine, citrizine or loratidine should be preferred over first generation anti histamines (chlorpheniramine) in patients with such lifestyle. Patient had not completed full course of chemotherapy, which is preliminary requirement for a case to be classified as “cure” and “treatment completed”. Moreover, patient had not defaulted for two consecutive months. Therefore, accordingto WHO treatment outcome categories, this patient can neither be classified as “cure” or “treatment completed” nor as “defaulter”. Further elaboration of WHO treatment outcome categories is required for adequate classification of patients with similar characteristics. Likelihood of non adherence can be significantly reduced by applying the WHO recommended “Patient Centered Approach” strategy. Close friend, class mate or family member can be selected as treatment supporter to ensure adherence to treatment.


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