Tuberculosis is a serious infectious disease that can affect the lungs. The bacteria spread through sneezes and coughs making it a communicable disease. This disease was rare and limited to the Western Countries until 1985. The emergence of HIV virus has made tuberculosis a global disease to reckon with. Although the rate of TB has come down since 1993, it remains a top concern for many countries. The biggest worry is the fact that TB bacteria can build resistance to many drugs. Therefore, it is very important that a TB patient takes a variety of medication suggested by the doctor at the right time.
Although your body is already in possession of the bacteria leading to tuberculosis, your immune system is able to prevent you from becoming sick. Doctors have made a distinction between latent and active tuberculosis (TB)--
In case of latent TB, the bacteria in the body in a passive state and it causes no symptoms, and therefore it is not contagious. But, in the case of active TB, you would become sick and may even spread the disease to others. It can take place in the first few weeks or even after several months of being infected with TB bacteria.
Types of Tuberculosis:
There are two types of tuberculosis- Latent and Active.
What are the symptoms of active TB?
What are the causes of TB?
Tuberculosis - How to effectively treat it?
With the treatment for tuberculosis, one should have patience as it may take time to cure a person completely of tuberculosis and the associated symptoms. Many factors are taken into consideration while determining the course of the treatment for tuberculosis, some of which include
In the case of Active TB and that too, a drug-resistant type, the use of multiple drugs (simultaneously) may be needed to produce the desired results. The drugs commonly used include Pyrazinamide, Rifampin, Ethambutol, and Isoniazid. In most cases, the doctors suggest the drugs be continued for at least six- nine months for positive results.
Some patients with Active TB (drug resistant) may also benefit from the use of fluoroquinolones (antibiotics) taken along with capreomycin, amikacin, or kanamycin (mostly given in the form of injections). Most patients are required to follow the medication for 20-30 months duration.
Unlike the Active TB, in the case of Latent TB, a combination of drugs and medications is not required. A single TB specific drug is enough to treat the condition.
Therefore, it is important to seek medical assistance and detect if you have any such health complications concerning TB.