TuberCulosis or TB disease:
Tuberculosis or TB is a very infectious disease that adversely affects the lungs. It is a communicable disease. The bacteria which cause tuberculosis is spread in the air through coughs and sneezes and passes from one person to another.
As per the reports of the World Health Organization (WHO), TB is amongst the top 10 causes of deaths worldwide.
Tuberculosis is a preventable disease and can be cured under the right conditions.
The TB symptoms depend upon the immune system of an individual. In many cases, even after getting an infection from the TB bacteria, the immune system is capable of preventing you from getting sick. Thus, there are two categories of TB:
- Latent TB: In this TB condition, the TB bacteria remain in the body but in an inactive state and hence don’t cause any symptoms. Also known as inactive TB, latent TB is not contagious. However, it can turn into an active TB, hence its treatment is necessary to control its spread.
- Active TB: There are many symptoms that Active TB causes, generally related to respiratory diseases. It includes coughing up blood or phlegm. A person can experience cough elongated for several weeks.
The other symptoms include:
- Sweating at night
- Loss in appetite
- Weight loss
TB can also affect the other parts of the body, including kidneys, spine, and brain.
Tuberculosis results due to a bacteria “Mycobacterium tuberculosis”. This bacteria spread from person to person through very tiny droplets into the air. It generally happens when a TB infected person sneezes, coughs, speaks, laughs or sings.
Although TB is contagious, it is not easy to spread. A person is more likely to get TB from a person with whom he/she is living or work as compared to a stranger.
AFB stain/GeneXpert/CBNAAT/PCR/LPA/LIQUID CULTURE/SOLID CULTURE might be done on sample suspected for TB.
There are certain tests that are performed to determine whether a person is infected from TB or not.
Sample collection can be done by a different method depending on organ involvement like sputum/bronchoscopic lavage(BAL) in lung TB, Pleural fluid in case of pleural effusion, FNAC/biopsy in lymph node TB, etc.
People suffering from TB disease are given medications for nearly 6-9 months. You should complete the full treatment, else it is highly likely that a TB infection came back.
The doctor prescribes multiple medicines as some TB strains are resistant to many drug types. The drugs can affect the liver, so people consuming the TB drugs must be aware of liver-injury symptoms such as:
- Loss in appetite
- Dark Urine
- Long fever
- Nausea or vomiting
- Abdominal Pain
If you face any of these symptoms then immediately tell your doctor. He will check your liver function thereafter.
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