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Tuberculosis (TB) is treated with anti-tuberculosis medications that are prescribed for at least 6 months and, in some cases, longer.

It is very important that TB medication is taken exactly as prescribed, without interruption, and for the full length of time required, even if symptoms have improved. This is to ensure cure and to prevent recurrence of the disease.

Medications are usually taken daily but some courses may only need to be taken 3 days a week. Treatment will often be supervised by a TB nurse or designated supervisor who watches while the medication is taken (called Directly Observed Therapy or DOT) or prepares the medications in a special dosage box to ensure that the correct type and dose of medication is taken.

As with all medication, there are possible side effects that should be reported immediately to the treating doctor, assigned case nurse or local general practitioner. Out of hours, hospital emergency departments should be consulted if the side effects are severe.

Patient fact sheets

Read more about tuberculosis medications:

English fact sheet (PDF 108KB)

Translated fact sheets are available for the following languages:

  • Arabic
  • Burmese
  • ┬čChinese
  • Dari
  • Farsi
  • Indonesian
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Thai
  • Tok Pisin (Pidgin)
  • Torres Strait Creole
  • Vietnamese
Last updated: 10 January 2018