Tuberculosis (TB) treatment loss to follow up (LTFU) plays an important contributory role to the staggering TB epidemic in South Africa. Reasons for treatment interruption are poorly understood.Treatment interruption appears to be the culmination of poor health literacy of patients and inadequate health education provided by clinicians. Limited occupational opportunities, fear of disclosure and stigmatization all contributed to treatment LTFU. Clinicians concurred that poor patient understanding of TB and that biomedical management lacking a psycho-social dimension further exacerbated the poor treatment outcome. TB remains a social disease, the successful management of which hinges on patient-centred care.