Definition of Nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease

Reviewed on 6/3/2021

Nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease: damage to the lung due to infection with nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM). The genus Mycobacteria includes NTM as well as many other kinds of bacteria, including those responsible for tuberculosis and leprosy. NTM are bacteria that occur naturally in water and soil. There are more than 150 types of NTM. In most people, they do not cause problems, but they can cause chronic lung disease in people with a weakened immune system. NTM infections typically affect older people but can occur in any age group. The infection may become chronic and require long-term antibiotic treatment.

Nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease sometime is referred to as nontuberculosis mycobacterial lung disease.

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References
American Lung Association. "Learn about nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM)."
<http://www.lung.org/lung-health-and-diseases/lung-disease-lookup/nontuberculosis-mycobacteria/learn-about-ntm.html>

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