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Confirming tuberculosis (TB) in children and obtaining information on drug susceptibility is essential to ensure adequate treatment. We assessed whether there are gaps in diagnosis and treatment of multidrug-resistant (MDR) TB in children in the European Union and European Economic Area (EU/EEA), quantified the burden of MDR TB in children and characterised cases. : We analysed surveillance data from 2007 to 2015 for paediatric cases younger than 15 years. : In that period, 26 EU/EEA countries reported 18,826 paediatric TB cases of whom 4,129 (21.9%) were laboratory-confirmed. Drug susceptibility testing results were available for 3,378 (17.9%), representing 81.8% of the confirmed cases. The majority (n = 2,967; 87.8%) had drug-sensitive TB, 249 (7.4%) mono-resistant TB, 64 (1.9%) poly-resistant TB, 90 (2.7%) MDR TB and eight (0.2%) had extensively drug-resistant (XDR) TB. MDR TB was more frequently reported among paediatric cases with foreign background (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 1.73; 95% confidence interval (95% CI): 1.12–2.67) or previous TB treatment (aOR: 6.42; 95% CI: 3.24–12.75). Successful treatment outcome was reported for 58 of 74 paediatric MDR TB cases with outcome reported from 2007 to 2013; only the group of 5–9 years-olds was significantly associated with unsuccessful treatment outcome (crude odds ratio (cOR) = 11.45; 95% CI: 1.24–106.04). : The burden of MDR TB in children in the EU/EEA appears low, but may be underestimated owing to challenges in laboratory confirmation. Diagnostic improvements are needed for early detection and adequate treatment of MDR TB. Children previously treated for TB or of foreign origin may warrant higher attention.


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