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Swasam Asthma, Allergy & Respiratory Centre

Tuberculosis

TB, or tuberculosis, is caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. TB can attack any part of the body but usually attacks the lungs. TB disease is a leading cause of death in India. Worldwide, TB causes more deaths than any other infectious disease.

Symptoms of Tuberculosis?

  • Chronic cough (more than 2 weeks)
  • Fatigue,
  • Fever,
  • Weight loss
  • Coughing up blood
  • Night sweats

How it spreads?

TB is spread through the air from one person to another. The bacteria are spread when a person with TB disease of the lungs or throat coughs or sneezes. People nearby can breathe in the TB germ and become infected.

What is the difference between TB infection Vs TB disease?

People who are infected with TB (latent TB infection) have TB germs in their bodies but do not feel sick or have symptoms. They cannot spread TB.

However, they may develop TB disease at some time in the future.

Some differences between latent and active TB:

Latent TB Infection Active TB Disease
TB germs are dormant (asleep) in your body. This phase can last for a long time. TB germs are reproducing and spreading in your body.
You don't look or feel sick. Your chest x-ray usually is normal. You usually feel sick. Typical symptoms include: cough lasting >3 weeks, weight loss, night sweats, and fever. A chest x-ray and other tests are needed to diagnose TB disease.
You can't spread TB to other people. If the TB germs are in your lungs, you may spread TB to other people by coughing, sneezing, talking, or singing.

How to diagnose Tuberculosis disease?

  • Presence of symptoms
  • Sputum examination to indentify the presence of organism
  • Tissue examination in case extrapulmonary (TB in outside the lung) tuberculosis

Treatment for tuberculosis ?

TB disease can be treated by taking several drugs for 6 to 9 months. It is very important that people who have TB disease finish the medicine, taking the drugs exactly as prescribed. If they stop taking the drugs too soon, they can become sick again; if they do not take the drugs correctly, the bacteria that are still alive may become resistant to those drugs. TB that is resistant to drugs is harder and more expensive to treat.
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Tuberculosis Details

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