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Hi,

My older sister was diagnosed with breast cancer that was already ant stage II and she needed to go through the chemo course before the surgery to remove the tumor. She seemed to be recovering as well as we could expect for the first week after the mastectomy. Unfortunately just after we started thinking it’s going to get better now, she started experiencing symptoms that she first chalked off as just simple cold. But after the coughing didn’t stop we thought it would be the best to see with her doctor what might be going on. An x-ray of her chest shows she has a dark spot on her lungs and they think it’s either pneumonia or M kansasii infection she could have picked up because chemo weakened her immune system. She is now hospitalized and we’re waiting for the results, but is M kansasii infection treatable and how?

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Hello, Guest!  I hope your sister is getting the treatment she needs for the nontuberculosis mycobacterium M kansasii infection.  Generally strong antibiotics will be given for this type of bacterial infection.  It will first be treated with rifampin plus ethambutol, isoniazid, and pyridoxine.  This will be given until her sputum culture comes back negative for the bacterium for 12 months.  If she has rifampin-resistant M kansaii disease, the drugs will be different. I hope whatever the line of treatment is, that your sister gets well soon.  Is there anybody who has had nonturberculosis mycobacterium M kansaii infection and would like to share their story?

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