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Tuberculosis (T.B)

Wednesday, 07 Dec, 2016

 

Tuberculosis (T.B) is an infectious disease caused by a bacterium – Myobacterium Tuberculosis. T.B. kills five lack people in India every year.  T.B. has made a comeback with the HIV Epidemic.

            The estimates of people in India with T.B. have been more than ten million and some four million being infectious today.

            The problem of T.B. patients requiring prolonged treatment for cure and problem of strains of T.B. bacteria developing resistance to front line drugs if being compounded by resurgence of T.B. disease caused by galloping HIV epidemic and an increase in poverty levels in many developing countries.

            The disease Tuberculosis forms one or many Tubercles in one or more organs of the body and if the disease is not checked it can spread widely and also cause death of the person.  The bacteria is found to be resent in 30 – 40 % of all Indians above the age of 45 years but the disease is found only in 1 – 5 % cases of all Indians.

            T.B. infection is usually spread when these bacteria, present in the small droplets of sputum are coughed out by a T.B. patient.  Cough for three weeks or more sometimes with Blood streaked sputum, fever especially at night, weight loss and loss of appetite are common symptoms.

            People having low immunity to disease, malnutrition, young children, pregnant women and those with HIV virus are more prone to suffer from T.B.  Also over crowded, dense congested living conditions in damp, dark and poorly ventilated houses predispose the residents to T.B. infection.  

            Diagnosis is confirmed by:-

1.                        X – Ray picture of the chest.

2.                        Examination of sputum with positive Myobacterium Tuberculosis bacteria.

3.                        A raised ESR reading but not necessarily a diagnostic measure.

 

            T.B. is a curable disease and is cured even among HIV infected persons.

Treatment:-

            Treatment with DOTS prolongs life of HIV infected patients at least by two years.  DOTS (Directly Observed Treatment Short course Therapy) are the best and sure treatment in controlling T.B. with excellent results.  RNTCP (Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme) is to apply the principles of DOTS to the Indian context and help in control of T.B. by giving awareness to community and sensitize them that Health is an asset.

 

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