During the initial phase, there is rapid killing of TB bacilli. Infectious patients become non-infectious within about 2 weeks. Patients improve and symptoms lessen.The vast majority of patients with sputum smear-positive PTB become sputum smear-negative within 2 months. Directly observed treatment (DOT) is essential in the initial phase to ensure that the patient takes every single dose.This protects rifampicin against the development of drug resistance. The risk of drug resistance is higher during the early stages of anti-TB drug treatment when there are more TB bacilli.
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