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What is ethionamide?

Ethionamide is the active ingredient in an antitubercular drug used to treat infections caused by susceptible strains of Mycobacteria tuberculosis, the cause of the disease called tuberculosis, or TB. Although it is an infection mainly in the lungs, almost any tissue may be affected, like kidneys, spine, brain, bones, joints and lymph nodes. Ethionamide works by interrupting the cell wall formation of the Mycobacterium. It is intended to be used with at least one other drug when the patient has TB that is resistant to or does not tolerate rifampin or isoniazid. Ethionamide comes in the form of tablets that are taken along with at least one other antitubercular drug that works differently to prevent resistance. Ethionamide is available only as the brand-name product Trecator.

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