- Approximately two
people in every 100,000 develop infections caused by Nontuberculous
- NTM are widespread
organisms that typically live in water (including tap water treated
with chlorine) and food sources.
- NTM can infect
the human body without showing any adverse signs. For example, millions
of people around the world
are infected with tuberculosis but will never know it because they will
not develop symptoms.
- Mycobacterial infections
are notoriously difficult to treat. The organisms are hardy and can
survive long exposure to
antibiotics, which leads to antibiotic resistance. Most mycobacteria
are susceptible to clarithromycin and rifamycin, but
antibiotic-resistant strains are known to exist.
- Since NTM is rare
and misdiagnosis is common, early and correct diagnosis is critical
to a patient’s ability to fight