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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Article Home Adult and Senior Health Antitubercular drugs

Antitubercular drugs

Antitubercular drugs are the antibiotics used in prevention and treatment of tuberculosis caused by the bacteria mycobacterium tuberculosis.


The common antitubercular drugs are Isoniazid, Rifampicin, ethambutol and Pyrizanamide. They are first line drugs used for treating tuberculosis.

In short course treatment of tuberculosis the Isoniazid, Rifampicin, pyrazinamide and ethambutol is given for 2 months followed by Isoniazid and Rifampicin alone for 4 months.

Second line drugs for treatment of tuberculosis

  • Aminoglycosides like Amikacin, kanamycin.
  • Polypeptides like capreomycin.
  • Fluoroquinolones like ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin, moxifloxacin
  • Thioamides like ethionamide, prothionamide
  • Cycloserine
  • Para aminosalicylic acid

Third line drugs for tuberculosis

  • Rifabutin
  • Macrolides like clarythromycin
  • Linezolid
  • Thioacetazone
  • Vitamin D
  • Thioridazine

Use of steroids in tuberculosis

Steroids like predinisolone and dexamethasone are used in tubercular meningitis, tubercular pericarditis and tubercular peritonitis.

Adverse effects of antitubercular drugs

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Itching
  • Joint pains
  • Burning sensation in feet
  • Jaundice
  • Skin rash
  • Angina
  • Constipation
  • Seating
  • Sleeplessness
  • Bitter taste
  • Body pain