Tuberculosis Symptoms Treatment and Prevention

Tuberculosis Symptoms Treatment and Prevention

Tuberculosis, popularly known as TB is an airborne disease, caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which affects the lungs. When a person who is infected with TB coughs, sneezes, or spits, TB germs spray into the air and an uninfected person only needs to inhale a few of these air-infested TB germs to catch the disease. The good news is that TB is both curable and preventable.

Tuberculosis (TB) remains the world’s deadliest infectious killer. Over 100, 000 cases of Tuberculosis are reported every year in Nigeria alone. Without proper treatment, almost half of all the people with TB will die.

March 24, World Tuberculosis Day is set aside to commemorate the day (in 1882) the bacterium that causes the disease was discovered. At the time, the disease was raging through Europe and the Americas, causing the death of one out of every seven people. This occurrence opened the way for diagnosing and curing Tuberculosis disease.

Who is most at risk?

Over 95% of cases and deaths resulting from Tuberculosis are reported in developing countries such as Nigeria. Tuberculosis mostly affects adults. In 2017, one million children below 14 years old had the disease and 230 000 children (including those with HIV-associated TB) died from the disease.

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Kinds of Tuberculosis

There are two types of tuberculosis infections: latent tuberculosis infections and active tuberculosis infections.

tuberculosis infections are said to be latent when the bacteria are in the body but cause no symptoms and are not contagious. On the other hand, tuberculosis infections are said to be active when the bacteria cause symptoms and can be transmitted to others.

About ¼ of the world’s population has latent TB and has up to a 15% lifetime risk of falling ill with TB. People who smoke, who are malnourished, or who have HIV have a much higher risk of falling ill from tuberculosis infections.

Common symptoms of tuberculosis

  • Cough with sputum and blood
  • Chest pains
  • Weakness and weight loss
  • Fever and night sweats

When a person develops active TB, the symptoms may be mild for many months. This can lead to delays in seeking care, and result in the transmission of the bacteria to others. People with active TB can infect 15 other people through close contact over a year.

If you feel any of these symptoms, please go to see a doctor immediately.

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Tuberculosis (TB) can be diagnosed by examining samples, for instance, blood under a microscope. More modern techniques include a skin test or a blood test.


Tuberculosis (TB) is treated with a standard 6-month course of 4 antimicrobial drugs provided with supervision and support to the patient by a health worker. Without such support, treatment adherence can be difficult, drug resistance variants developed and TB disease can spread. The vast majority of TB cases can be cured when medicines are provided and taken properly.

Between 2000 and 2017, an estimated 54 million lives were saved through TB diagnosis and treatment.

Speak with your doctor today if you develop any of the symptoms listed above.

Let us know your thought on Tuberculosis Symptoms and Treatment – See 65 Frequently Asked Questions


Tuberculosis Symptoms and Treatment – See 65 Frequently Asked Questions

1 Is there a blood test for tuberculosis?

Tuberculosis (TB) blood test, also called an Interferon Gamma Release Assay or IGRA, is a way to find out if you have TB germs in your body. A TB blood test can be done instead of a TB skin test (Mantoux). There are two kinds of TB blood tests: QuantiFERON®-TB.

2 Can you have tuberculosis and not know it?

TB bacteria can live in the body without making you sick. … People with latent TB infection do not feel sick, do not have any symptoms, and cannot spread TB bacteria to others. If TB bacteria become active in the body and multiply, the person will go from having a latent TB infection to being sick with TB disease.

3 What does tuberculosis do to the lungs?

TB is caused by the bacterium M tuberculosis. The infection destroys patients’ lung tissue, causing them to cough up the bacteria, which then spread through the air and can be inhaled by others. The mechanism behind this lung damage is poorly understood

4 What body systems does tuberculosis affect?

Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease caused by germs that are spread from person to person through the air. TB usually affects the lungs, but it can also affect other parts of the body, such as the brain, the kidneys, or the spine

5 What are the symptoms of abdominal tuberculosis?

Clinical features of intestinal TB include abdominal pain, weight loss, anemia, and fever with night sweats. Patients may present with symptoms of obstruction, right iliac fossa pain, or a palpable mass in the right iliac fossa

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6 How fast does TB progress?

Most people infected with the germ that causes TB never develop TB disease. If TB disease does develop, it can occur two to three months after infection or years later. The risk of TB disease lessens as time passes. Treatment can prevent the development of the disease.

7 Does stomach TB spread?

Abdominal tuberculosis. … Tuberculosis bacteria reach the gastrointestinal tract via the hematogenous spread, ingestion of infected sputum, or direct spread from infected contiguous lymph nodes and fallopian tubes.

8 What is gastrointestinal tuberculosis?

Gastrointestinal tuberculosis is defined as infection of the peritoneum, hollow or solid abdominal organs, and abdominal lymphatics with Mycobacterium tuberculosis organisms. … Patients usually present with abdominal pain, weight loss, fever, anorexia, change in bowel habits, nausea, and vomiting.

9 Does TB cause stomach pain?

Clinical features of intestinal TB include abdominal pain, weight loss, anemia, and fever with night sweats. Patients may present with symptoms of obstruction, right iliac fossa pain, or a palpable mass in the right iliac fossa. … This may represent tabes mesenterica. The ileum is more commonly involved than the jejunum.

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10 What is abdominal TB?

Abdominal tuberculosis (TB) is a type of TB that affects the gut, the peritoneum (the lining of the abdominal cavity), abdominal lymph nodes, and, more rarely, the solid organs in the abdomen (liver, pancreas, and spleen)


10 What is non-pulmonary tuberculosis?

The two types of clinical manifestation of tuberculosis (TB) are pulmonary TB (PTB) and extrapulmonary TB (EPTB). … EPTB refers to TB involving organs other than the lungs (e.g., pleura, lymph nodes, abdomen, genitourinary tract, skin, joints, and bones, or meninges).

12 Is extrapulmonary TB contagious?

Extra-pulmonary tuberculosis is a non-contagious form of TB. It is not commonly accompanied by cough and high-grade fevers as with pulmonary tuberculosis. … For extra-pulmonary tuberculosis, blood or lymphatic spread of tubercle bacilli to body parts outside the lungs can occur at the time of primary infection.

13 How do you get extrapulmonary TB?

Extrapulmonary Tuberculosis (TB) Tuberculosis outside the lung usually results from hematogenous dissemination. Sometimes infection directly extends from an adjacent organ. Symptoms vary by site but generally include fever, malaise, and weight loss.

14 What causes stomach TB?


Firstly, the tubercle bacilli may enter the intestinal tract through the ingestion of infected milk or sputum. The mucosal layer of the GI tract can be infected with the bacilli with the formation of epithelioid tubercles in the lymphoid tissue of the submucosa.

15 What causes extrapulmonary tuberculosis?

Mycobacterial Lymphadenitis

This is the most common form of extrapulmonary tuberculosis in the Western world. Tuberculous cervical lymphadenitis is caused by the spread of Mycobacterium tuberculosis from a lung infection.

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16 What is extra-pulmonary TB?

Extrapulmonary tuberculosis is tuberculosis (TB) within a location in the body other than the lungs. This occurs in 15–20% of active cases, causing other kinds of TB. … Extrapulmonary TB occurs more commonly in immunosuppressed persons and young children. In those with HIV, this occurs in more than 50% of cases.

17 Can TB cause cancer?

Tuberculosis may increase the risk of lung cancer through substantial and prolonged pulmonary inflammation, leading to host tissue damage, fibrosis, scar formation, and genetic alterations (3–6). A recent meta-analysis reported tuberculosis to be associated with a 1.7-fold elevation in the risk of lung cancer (7)

18 What is TB Adenitis?

Tuberculous lymphadenitis is a chronic, specific granulomatous inflammation of the lymph node with caseation necrosis, caused by infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis or related bacteria. The characteristic morphological element is the tuberculous granuloma (caseating tubercule)

19 What is TB of lymph nodes?

The lymph node TB usually causes painful swelling of one or more lymph nodes. Most often, the disease is localized to the anterior or posterior cervical chains (70-90%) or supraclavicular. It is often bilateral and non-contiguous lymph nodes can be involved [3].

20 Is TB of lymph nodes contagious?

Unlike pulmonary tuberculosis, extra-pulmonary TB can be characterized by a lymph node that refers to the swelling of the particular region of the body located near or distantly from the site of infection. … Extra-pulmonary tuberculosis is a non-contagious form of TB


21 What are the symptoms of lymph node tuberculosis?

Tuberculous lymphadenitis usually presents as a gradually increasing painless swelling of one or more lymph nodes of weeks to months duration. Some patients, especially those with extensive disease or a co-existing disease, may have systemic symptoms i.e. fever, weight loss, fatigue, and night sweats.

22 Who can treat tuberculosis?

Most common TB drugs

If you have latent tuberculosis, you may need to take only one or two types of TB drugs. Active tuberculosis, particularly if it’s a drug-resistant strain, will require several drugs at once. The most common medications used to treat tuberculosis include Isoniazid.

23 Can TB be cured in 2 months?

Tuberculosis (TB) is a serious infection that can affect the lungs and other parts of the body. The usual way to treat TB is to take 4 medicines by mouth every day for 2 months, then take 2 of the same medicines for 4 more months, for a total of 6 months.

24 Can TB be cured in 3 months?

CDC: TB treatment can now be done in 3 months. ATLANTA – Health officials on Monday celebrated a faster treatment for people who have tuberculosis but aren’t infectious after investigators found a new combination of pills knocks out the disease in three months instead of nine.

25 Is TB 100% curable?

TB can usually be completely cured by the person with TB taking a combination of TB drugs. The only time that TB may not be curable is when the person has drug-resistant TB. … TB is still very serious because if people don’t take their drugs correctly or they don’t take the correct drugs they may not be cured.


26 Are all forms of tuberculosis contagious?

Yes, TB is highly contagious and can be transmitted from an infected person to an uninfected person, mainly when a person with TB coughs, sneezes, speaks, or even sings (known as airborne transmission or airborne disease). … Patients with this type of infection are termed as having latent (dormant) TB.

27 Is Honey Good for tuberculosis?

The study conducted by doctors at Mulago hospital indicates that honey not only quickens the healing process but also suffocates the TB bacteria preventing it from spreading to other parts of the body. … Left untreated, each person with active TB disease will infected on average between 10 to 15 people every year.”

28 What are the three types of tuberculosis?

Tuberculosis: Types

  • Active TB Disease. Active TB is an illness in which the TB bacteria are rapidly multiplying and invading different organs of the body. …
  • Miliary TB. Miliary TB is a rare form of active disease that occurs when TB bacteria find their way into the bloodstream. …
  • Latent TB Infection.

29 What bacteria causes tuberculosis?

Tuberculosis (TB) is caused by a type of bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It’s spread when a person with active TB disease in their lungs coughs or sneezes and someone else inhales the expelled droplets, which contain TB bacteria.

30 Can a person with TB go to work?

If you have TB disease of the lungs or throat, you are probably infectious. You need to stay home from work or school so that you don’t spread TB bacteria to other people. … Your doctor or nurse will tell you when you can return to work or school or visit with friends.


31 Does smoking affect the tuberculosis test?

False-negative and indeterminate Interferon Gamma Release Assay (IGRA) results are a well-documented problem. Cigarette smoking is known to increase the risk of tuberculosis (TB) and to impair Interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) responses to antigenic challenge, but the impact of smoking on IGRA performance is not known.

32 Can smoke cause TB?

Tobacco use and secondhand smoke increase the risk of developing TB. These factors also make the disease harder to treat and more likely to return after treatment. Quitting smoking and avoiding contact with smoke can reduce the risk of developing TB.

33 How fatal is tuberculosis?

Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease caused by bacteria that are spread through the air from person to person. If not treated properly, TB disease can be fatal. People infected with TB bacteria who are not sick can take medication to prevent TB disease from developing in the future.

34 How does tuberculosis kill you?

The bacteria usually attack the lungs. But TB bacteria can attack any part of the body such as the kidney, spine, and brain. If not treated properly, TB disease can be fatal. TB disease was once the leading cause of death in the United States.

35 What does tuberculosis look like?

TB bacteria most commonly grow in the lungs and can cause symptoms such as A bad cough that lasts 3 weeks or longer. Pain in the chest. Coughing up blood or sputum (mucus from deep inside the lungs)


36 How do they diagnose tuberculosis?

If your chest X-ray shows signs of tuberculosis, your doctor may take samples of your sputum — the mucus that comes up when you cough. The samples are tested for TB bacteria. Sputum samples can also be used to test for drug-resistant strains of TB

37 How long is TB airborne?

Viable mycobacteria can persist in sputum for weeks after the onset of therapy,2, and isoniazid-susceptible TB bacilli in droplet nuclei containing isoniazid were demonstrated to remain viable after 12 hours airborne.

38 What is M TB?

Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. TB) is a species of pathogenic bacteria in the family Mycobacteriaceae and the causative agent of tuberculosis. … Primarily a pathogen of the mammalian respiratory system, it infects the lungs.

39 What is the host for tuberculosis?

These include M. Bovis (a pathogen of cattle), Mycobacterium caprae (sheep and goats), Mycobacterium microti (voles), and Mycobacterium pinnipedii (seals and sea lions). Mycobacterium Bovis used to be a significant cause of human TB, primarily in children who consumed raw milk [17].

40 How does someone get Mycobacterium tuberculosis?

Tuberculosis (TB) is caused by a type of bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It’s spread when a person with active TB disease in their lungs coughs or sneezes and someone else inhales the expelled droplets, which contain TB bacteria.


41 Who is most at risk for tuberculosis?

People at the highest risk for developing active TB disease are those with a weak immune system, including:

  • Babies and young children, whose immune systems have not matured.
  • People with chronic conditions such as diabetes or kidney disease.
  • People with HIV/AIDS.
  • Organ transplant recipients.

42 Where does M tuberculosis live?

tuberculosis will develop TB disease at some point in their lives. TB disease can occur in pulmonary and extrapulmonary sites. TB disease most commonly affects the lungs; this is referred to as pulmonary TB. In 2011, 67% of TB cases in the United States were exclusively pulmonary.

43 How does tuberculosis reproduce?

Mycobacterium tuberculosis that infects the lungs is inhaled by the host and engulfed by the macrophages of the alveoli. These bacteria can now lay dormant or begin to reproduce inside the macrophages, which triggers the infection to occur

44 Is milk good for tuberculosis?

A person with TB should also be encouraged to eat pulses in other forms e.g. roasted chana. Oils & fats are a source of energy. … For vegetarians, a combination of cereals & pulses can give a quantity of protein equivalent to that of animal proteins. The daily consumption of milk and milk products is also beneficial.

45 Is TB painful?

People with TB disease usually have symptoms and may spread TB bacteria to others. … TB bacteria most commonly grow in the lungs and can cause symptoms such as A bad cough that lasts 3 weeks or longer. Pain in the chest.


46 Which stage of TB is dangerous?

In advanced stages, the patient will suffer persistent coughing, breathlessness, and fever. Many times TB is not diagnosed and becomes dormant; this is known as initial tuberculosis. In severe cases among young children between the ages of two and four, initial TB can be fatal.

47 Is Spinal tuberculosis contagious?

TB is spread through the air from one person to another. … TB disease in the lungs or throat can be infectious. This means that the bacteria can be spread to other people. TB in other parts of the body, such as the kidney or spine, is usually not infectious.

48 Does a chest x-ray show latent TB?

Tuberculosis Infection and Tuberculosis Disease

Individuals with latent TB infection are not infectious. They are negative to most TB tests including culture, Nucleic Acid Amplification Tests (NAAT), and smear microscopy. Small nodules are occasionally seen on a chest x-ray or CT scan.

49 What are the stages of tuberculosis?

TB infection happens in 4 stages: the initial macrophage response, the growth stage, the immune control stage, and the lung cavitation stage. These four stages happen over roughly one month.

50 Will I always test positive for TB?

Once you have a positive TB skin test you will always have a positive TB skin test, even if you complete treatment. Ask your doctor for a written record of your positive skin test result. This will be helpful if you are asked to have another TB skin test in the future.


51 Can your body fight off TB?

If you are healthy, you probably have a strong immune system and your body can fight off infections from bacteria or viruses easily. So if you breathe in TB bacteria, your immune system would probably kill them off straight away, without you ever getting ill or knowing about it.

52 Does TB stay in your system forever?

Even though the TB germs in your body are dormant (sleeping), they are very strong. Many germs are killed shortly after you start taking your medicine, but some stay alive in your body for a long time. It takes longer for them to die.

53 What if I test positive for TB?

A positive test result means only that TB bacteria have been detected. It does not indicate whether the person has active TB or latent infection. This requires additional testing, such as a chest X-ray and sputum sample, which tests the thick mucus from the lower respiratory tract.

54 How does the tuberculosis vaccine work?

How well does the vaccine work? The BCG vaccine contains a weakened strain of TB bacteria, which builds up immunity and encourages the body to fight TB if infected with it, without causing the disease itself.

55 Can you get TB if you’ve been vaccinated?

BCG is a vaccine for TB. … The BCG vaccine is not very good at protecting adults against TB. You can still get TB infection or TB disease even if you were vaccinated with BCG. You will need a TB test to see if you have a latent TB infection or TB disease.


56 Can I marry a girl with TB?

If due to TB and its lengthy treatment, a woman’s marriage does not go ahead, then it is not her last opportunity to marry. She can marry once she is in good health again.

57 Is tuberculosis inherited?

Tuberculosis is genetic susceptibility to Genes that make someone susceptible to developing tuberculosis (TB) when exposed to the bacterium (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) that causes it. … People with at least one high-risk copy of this genetic region are ten times more likely to develop TB than normal.

58 Can TB be passed from father to child?

My father has TB. … While it is possible to catch TB from a family member, you should be aware that: only TB of the lungs or throat is infectious, so if someone has another type of TB you cannot catch it from them. TB is a bacterium, so it is not spread in the same way as a cold virus.

59 Should a person with TB be isolated?

Persons who have or are suspected of having infectious TB disease should be placed in an area away from other patients, preferably in an airborne infection isolation (AII) room.

60 Is it safe to be around someone with tuberculosis?

It is very important to remember that only someone with active TB disease in the lungs can spread the germ. People with TB infection are not contagious, do not have any symptoms, and do not put their family, friends, and co-workers at risk.


61 Can you visit someone with tuberculosis?

Yes – But visitors who SHOULD NOT come to see you are those people who may have a lowered immunity, young children and babies, and pregnant women.

62 Can the lungs recover after TB?

The findings show that TB bacteria may persist in the lungs even after patients have finished treatment and are free of clinical symptoms

63 What does tuberculosis do to the lungs?

TB is caused by the bacterium M tuberculosis. The infection destroys patients’ lung tissue, causing them to cough up the bacteria, which then spread through the air and can be inhaled by others. The mechanism behind this lung damage is poorly understood

64 How long does it take to die from tuberculosis?

Left untreated, TB can kill approximately one-half of patients within five years and produce significant morbidity (illness) in others.

65 What is the first sign or symptom of tuberculosis?

The symptoms of TB include a low-grade fever, night sweats, weakness or tiredness, and weight loss. If TB is in the lungs, the person may also cough, have chest pain, shortness of breath, or might be coughing up blood. Other symptoms depend on the part of the body affected by the TB germs.


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