Although it is known that the in vitro MICs of rifampin and ethambutol are poorly correlated with the clinical response in Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) lung disease (MAC-LD), evidence for this is limited. This study investigated the association between treatment outcome and the in vitro MICs of rifampin and ethambutol in patients with MAC-LD. Among patients diagnosed with macrolide-susceptible MAC-LD between January 2008 and December 2013, 274 patients who were treated with a standard regimen for ≥12 months until August 2017 and whose in vitro MIC results were available were enrolled at a tertiary referral center in South Korea. The MICs of antimicrobial agents were determined using the broth microdilution method. The mean age of the included patients was 60.4 years. The overall treatment success rate was 79.6% (218/274 patients) and tended to decrease with increasing MICs of rifampin and ethambutol, particularly at MICs of <8 μg/ml. Treatment success rate was significantly different between MAC isolates with MICs of ≥8 μg/ml for rifampin and ethambutol and those with MICs of ≥8 μg/ml for rifampin and/or ethambutol (64.9% versus 85.3%, P < 0.001). Multivariate analysis showed that an MIC of ≥8 μg/ml for both drugs and initial sputum acid-fast bacillus (AFB) smear positivity were independent risk factors for an unfavorable response (adjusted odds ratio [OR] = 3.154, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.641 to 6.063, and P = 0.001 for an MIC of ≥8 μg/ml; adjusted OR = 2.769, 95% CI = 1.420 to 5.399, and P = 0.003 for initial sputum AFB smear positivity). These findings suggest that the in vitro MICs of rifampin and ethambutol may be related to treatment outcome in MAC-LD.
- Mycobacterium avium complex
- Treatment outcome