Bayesian spatial survival analysis of duration to cure among new smear-positive pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB) patients in Iran, during 2011–2018

Eisa Nazar, Hossein Baghishani, Hassan Doosti, Vahid Ghavami, Ehsan Aryan, Mahshid Nasehi, Saeid Sharafi, Habibollah Esmaily*, Jamshid Yazdani Charati

*Corresponding author for this work

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Mycobacterium tuberculosis is the causative agent of tuberculosis (TB), and pulmonary TB is the most prevalent form of the disease worldwide. One of the most concrete actions to ensure an effective TB control program is monitoring TB treatment outcomes, particularly duration to cure; but, there is no strong evidence in this respect. Thus, the primary aim of this study was to examine the possible spatial variations of duration to cure and its associated factors in Iran using the Bayesian spatial survival model. All new smear-positive PTB patients have diagnosed from March 2011 to March 2018 were included in the study. Out of 34,744 patients, 27,752 (79.90%) patients cured and 6992 (20.10%) cases were censored. For inferential purposes, the Markov chain Monte Carlo algo-rithms are applied in a Bayesian framework. According to the Bayesian estimates of the regression parameters in the proposed model, a Bayesian spatial log-logistic model, the variables gender (male vs. female, TR = 1.09), altitude (>750 m vs. ≤750 m, TR = 1.05), bacilli density in initial smear (3+ and 2+ vs. 1–9 Basil & 1+, TR = 1.09 and TR = 1.02, respectively), delayed diagnosis (>3 months vs. <1 month, TR = 1.02), nationality (Iranian vs. other, TR = 1.02), and location (urban vs. rural, TR = 1.02) had a significant influence on prolonging the duration to cure. Indeed, pretreatment weight (TR = 0.99) was substantially associated with shorter duration to cure. In summary, the spatial log-logistic model with convolution prior represented a better performance to analyze the duration to cure of PTB patients. Also, our results provide valuable information on critical determinants of duration to cure. Prolonged duration to cure was observed in provinces with low TB incidence and high average altitude as well. Accordingly, it is essential to pay a special attention to such provinces and monitor them carefully to reduce the duration to cure while maintaining a focus on high-risk provinces in terms of TB prevalence.

Original languageEnglish
Article number54
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2020. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • pulmonary tuberculosis
  • duration to cure
  • altitude
  • spatial survival models
  • interval censored
  • Iran

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