The sputum (matter spat out after a deep cough) of the TB patient should be tested at 2 or 3 months and again at 5 or 7 months.
Testing at 2 or 3 months will determine if the TB medication is having the desired effect on the TB patient. If it is not, then the staff at the TB clinic, sisters and doctors will consider other alternatives.
Testing at 5 or 7 months will show if the patient has been cured of TB. It is a wonderful achievement when the patient completes the full course of medication but proof of cure must be obtained through the patient giving that final sputum.