Fliers Warned About Tuberculosis
CDC Tells Passengers on Flights With Drug-Resistant-Tuberculosis Patient to Get Tested
Before leaving the U.S., the patient knew he had tuberculosis and, like all
tuberculosis patients, had been advised not to travel, according to
But he didn't know his tuberculosis was extremely resistant to drugs, and he
felt he had a "compelling reason" to travel, says Gerberding, who
declined to elaborate on the patient's reason for traveling.
Gerberding says the CDC didn't know that the man had XDR TB until after he
left the U.S.
His departure surprised the CDC but wasn't illegal, says Gerberding.
"From our perspective, no laws were broken here," she says.
It's not yet clear how or where the man contracted tuberculosis, Gerberding
About XDR TB
Since 1993, the CDC has gotten reports of 49 people in the U.S. who have had
"Unfortunately, that's not true in many other parts of the world, so
many people who have XDR TB do not survive their infection," Gerberding
told reporters today.
"That's part of the reason why we're taking this situation so seriously
and why we took this unusual step of issuing a federal isolation order in an
effort to curtail any additional possibility of exposure to passengers or
others that were potentially in harm's way," says Gerberding.
In March, Gerberding told a congressional subcommittee that XDR TB has been
found in 17 countries from all regions of the world, most frequently in the
former Soviet Union and Asia.
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