Onhealthmeup.com - Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease that usually affects the lung breathing organs, but can also invade other organs. TB disease can only be transmitted from someone who has active pulmonary tuberculosis when coughing, screaming, laughing or sneezing. Children, elderly or anyone who have lower immune systems are more susceptible to contracting.
This bacterium is called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Tuberculosis infects the lungs that cause symptoms of a cough . But do you know tuberculosis also can also infect other organs, such as lymph nodes, intestines, bones, even the brain?
Most people infected with TB bacteria do not have any symptoms even though there is a 10 percent lifetime risk of bacteria remaining in the body. Symptoms can appear later in life when tuberculosis becomes active or with the term tuberculosis. For someone who has asymptomatic TB, medications can help reduce the risk of developing disease becoming active.
Cause and Transmission of TB
TB germs spread when a person with active pulmonary tuberculosis disease coughs, shouts, laughs or sneezes. The closest person may have inhaled air contaminated with tuberculosis bacteria may become infected. Bacteria can settle in the lungs and begin to grow and infect (Pulmonary TB). Here, bacteria can move through the bloodstream or lymphatic system to other body parts (Extra Pulmonary TB) such as the kidneys, spine, and brain.
Although TB infection in the lungs or throat can spread and infected, TB is usually not contagious. People who are infected with TB but not sick of tuberculosis (inactivity) also can not transmit TB to others. These people have TB germs that are 'sleeping' (latent TB). Sometimes, a mother who has an untreated, active TB disease may initiate bacteria before or during birth (congenital TB), although this is very rare.
High-risk people are exposed to tuberculosis
People most at risk of contracting TB disease are those who have close contact with active pulmonary tuberculosis patients, over long periods of time. Especially in the following high-risk activities:
- Having a human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) disease or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)
- Low immune system
- Drinking alcohol
- Stayed in crowded room
- Health workers
- Symptoms of Active TB Disease
Some features and symptoms of active pulmonary tuberculosis include:
- A persistent cough, generally above 3 weeks
- A bleeding cough
- Often sweats at night when the room temperature is not hot
- The body is weak and tired
- Weight loss for no apparent reason
- Diagnosis of tuberculosis
If your doctor suspects that you have tuberculosis, it will be necessary to check for diagnosis. Examinations used to diagnose tuberculosis may include:
- Medical history
- Skin test (tuberculin skin test using Mantoux procedure)
- Blood test
- Rongsen Chest - to see if TB has affected the lungs
- Sputum test - to see if TB bacteria already exist in sputum.
You should also be checked for TB if you:
- Living with HIV or AIDS
- Stay or work in close contact with someone recently diagnosed with active tuberculosis
- Experiencing some symptoms of tuberculosis as above
- Steps of TB Treatment
If your doctor has diagnosed that you have TB, your doctor will prescribe anti-tuberculosis medication, which is a package and can usually be obtained free of charge at Health Center, public hospitals, and other health facilities.
TB medicine will take at least six months to cure TB disease, sometimes even longer than that. It is imperative to comply with the drug schedule and to fully treat the medication. If you do not solve it according to doctor's advice, TB infection will recur and it will be more difficult to cure because TB bacteria may have become resistant (immune) to the previous drug.