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Tuberculosis Tips

Tuberculosis (TB) - Signs & Symptoms Of It!

Dr. Kamendra Singh Pawar 90% (71 ratings)
MD - Pulmonary Medicine, Fellowship in Sleep Medicine
Pulmonologist, Indore
Tuberculosis (TB) - Signs & Symptoms Of It!

Tuberculosis or TB as it is commonly known in medical circles is a mycobacterial infection commonly affecting the lungs. While there are some countries in the world, where TB is more common, anybody can develop TB if they are not very healthy. The TB mycobacteria spreads through the air. While some people's immune system would be able to fight the disease back; some people who have risk factors, the disease may continue to develop and present with symptoms.

So, a person can develop TB in two circumstances:

  1. Exposure to TB
    • Visited a country where TB is very common
    • Spent time with a person who is infected with TB
    • Exposure to crowded places like a market or a healthcare facility where TB mycobacteria are present
  2. Weakened immune system
    • Be HIV infected
    • Weak immune system due to long-term use of steroids
    • Chronic diseases like diabetes, malnutrition, end-stage kidney or liver disease, cancer, etc.
    • Extremes of age (children whose immune system is not fully developed, elderly whose immunity is weakened)
    • Chronic smoker, IV drug abuse, and/or alcohol user
    • Drug therapy like chemotherapy, long-term use of steroids, auto-immune disease treatments, etc.

Signs and symptoms of TB:

If you are at risk, it is also suggested that you know the early warning signs and symptoms of TB. TB most commonly affects the lungs and is known as pulmonary tuberculosis. Watching out for these helps in early diagnosis which can both help arrest the condition in the early stages and improve prognosis.

  1. A persistent cough which lasts for more than 3 weeks
  2. Pain in the chest worsened with coughing
  3. Presence of blood in the sputum
  4. Generalized and extreme weakness or fatigue
  5. Unexplained weight loss
  6. Loss of appetite
  7. Fever and chills
  8. Profuse sweating at night
710 people found this helpful

Pulmonary Tuberculosis - Know Regimen For It!

Dr. Gurmeet Singh Chabbra 89% (60 ratings)
MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, MD - Chest & TB
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
Pulmonary Tuberculosis - Know Regimen For It!

Pulmonary tuberculosis was a fatal disease in the past in India. On average, 95% of the deaths occur in third world countries, especially the developing ones, due to tuberculosis. In India, the deaths account to 50% out of the 95%. Such is the scenario that everyone is apprehensive if they have a prolonged cough and cold. As sputum with blood is one sign that the person is suffering from tuberculosis, steps must be taken promptly and at a swift pace to streamline things for quick care.

Tuberculosis is an air-borne disease and it can easily travel through the air when the affected person is in contact. In tuberculosis, specific bacteria called mycobacterium tuberculosis affects the lungs. On average, 10% of such infections progress into acute disease and kill the affected individuals.

The symptoms of tuberculosis are seen more in patients suffering from AIDS as their immunity is often compromised. Early detection can be made possible through a chest X-Ray, microscopic examination, and the nature of the fluids. In case you are suffering from a prolonged cough and cold, you must go for a tuberculin skin test or blood test to find out more about the problem.

Why is it important to eat a proper diet during pulmonary tuberculosis?
Malnutrition and pulmonary tuberculosis are interrelated. If you are eating right and inducting all healthy meals in your daily lifestyle, it will build your immunity and help fight against grave diseases. When you have pulmonary tuberculosis, the desire or craving for the food will disappear and eventually, your body will wither off. You will lose mass by losing muscles.

So, eating healthily can only help you stay strong to defeat pulmonary tuberculosis. Those who are suffering from tuberculosis face challenges with nutrients in their body. They are deprived of essential micro-nutrients and they have severe deficiencies of zinc, Vitamin A, D, C & E, selenium, iron and copper.

A protein- and vitamin-rich diet can boost the immunity of the body and prevent deadly diseases from wreaking havoc in the body. So, if you are wondering about food, here are a few items that you can eat and few that you can avoid when you have pulmonary tuberculosis.

Food to eat -

  • Kale and spinach are instant sources of high iron and Vitamin B, which will help you power up your immune system.
  • Whole grains like wheat, bread and cereals are a must-have during this time-tested period.
  • Carrots, peppers, tomatoes, blueberries, and cherries are rich anti-oxidants and they can boost your immune system by flushing out the oxidants from the body, which are tantamount to poison.
  • Vegetable oil (not butter) could be a “green go” during pulmonary tuberculosis.

Food to avoid -

  1. Greasy food like beef, chicken, and mutton must be avoided. They can increase the cholesterol level in the body and compromise on the power of immunity.
  2. Avoid margarine and butter. One should not eat cake, pastries, and other food with hydrogenated oil.
  3. Keep an eye on your regular diet, work to build strong immunity, and always stay healthy.
1468 people found this helpful

Tuberculosis - Know Reason Behind It!

Dr. Chintan B. Patel 87% (177 ratings)
DNB Family Medicine, MBBS
General Physician, Ahmedabad
Tuberculosis - Know Reason Behind It!

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 the 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.

What are the symptoms of active TB?

  1. If you are coughing for over three weeks and sometimes even coughing up blood, it can be a sign of TB.
  2. Chest pain and pain, while coughing and breathing along with fatigue, fever, chills and night sweat, are the common symptoms of TB along with loss of appetite and unintentional weight loss. TB may even affect other organs of your body, including your brain, spine and kidneys.
  3. When TB takes place outside the lungs, then the signs of TB can vary as per the organs that are involved. For instance, TB in the spine can cause back pain and that in kidneys may cause blood in the urine.

What are the causes of TB?
TB is caused by bacteria which spreads from individual to individual via the microscopic droplets that are released into the air. This may happen when an affected person is left untreated and he speaks or sneezes or coughs or laughs.

Though the disease is contagious, it is not easy to be affected by it. As a result, you are much more likely to get affected with active tuberculosis from a person you live with or come in regular contact with, rather than a stranger. It is important to note here that people who are affected by TB and going through proper medications for over two weeks are no more contagious.

Right from the 1980s, the number of individuals affected with TB has increased dramatically, owing to the spread of HIV, which is the virus known for causing AIDS. A person infected with HIV has a weak immunity system as a result of which it becomes difficult for the body to deal with TB bacteria. So those who have AIDS are more likely to be affected with active TB and sometimes the latent form also progresses to an active one very quickly. Therefore, it is important to seek medical assistance and detect if you have any such health complications concerning TB.

2693 people found this helpful

What Triggers Tuberculosis (TB)?

Dr. Manav Manchanda 85% (10 ratings)
MBBS, MD - Respiratory Medicine, FNB - Critical Care, EDRM, IDCC
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
What Triggers Tuberculosis (TB)?

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 the 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.

What are the symptoms of active TB?
If you are coughing for over three weeks and sometimes even coughing up blood, it can be a sign of TB. Chest pain and pain, while coughing and breathing along with fatigue, fever, chills and night sweat, are the common symptoms of TB along with the loss of appetite and unintentional weight loss. TB may even affect other organs of your body, including your brain, spine and kidneys. When TB takes place outside the lungs, then the signs of TB can vary as per the organs that are involved. For instance, TB in the spine can cause back pain and that in kidneys may cause blood in the urine.

What are the causes of TB?
TB is stemmed from a bacteria which spreads from individual to individual via the microscopic droplets that are released into the air. This may happen when an affected person is left untreated and he speaks or sneezes or coughs or laughs. Though the disease is contagious, it is not easy to be affected by it. As a result, you are much more likely to get affected with active tuberculosis from a person you live with or come in regular contact with, rather than a stranger. It is important to note here that people who are affected by TB and going through proper medications for over two weeks are no more contagious.

Right from the 1980s, the number of individuals affected with TB has increased dramatically, owing to the spread of HIV, which is the virus known for causing AIDS. A person infected with HIV has a weak immune system as a result of which it becomes difficult for the body to deal with TB bacteria. So those who have AIDS are more likely to be affected with active TB and sometimes the latent form also progresses to an active one very quickly. Therefore, it is important to seek medical assistance and detect if you have any such health complications concerning TB.

2784 people found this helpful

Tuberculosis - How To Detect It?

Dr. Arunesh Kumar 90% (202 ratings)
MBBS, MRCP - General Medicine, MRCP Respiratory Medicine, CCST Respiratory Medicine
Pulmonologist, Gurgaon
Tuberculosis - How To Detect It?

Tuberculosis is a lung-related disease that is caused by bacteria known as Mycobacterium Tuberculosis. Tuberculosis spreads through the air and it is a highly contagious disease that can be transmitted through coughing, sneezing and spitting. The symptoms of this condition include coughing, blood discharge while coughing, fever, extreme weight loss, and chills. Against general myths, this disease can be treated and is curable too. Effective, timely diagnosis and treatment with the correct methods and medication are required. Let us find out the various means for the effective treatment of tuberculosis.

- Diagnosis: Let us first look at the diagnosis method that will help in detecting the presence of the bacteria in the body. The doctor will take a blood sample and conduct a series of lab tests in order to diagnose the condition. Also, the doctor will check the medical history of the patient so as to understand what kind of complications the person may be prone to. For this, the doctor will also find out if the patient is suffering from diseases like diabetes, malnutrition, and other conditions arising out of tobacco abuse.

Diagnosis of pulmonary TB is by sputum for AFB examination and some blood test may also be required.

- Medication: Usually, the best way to treat this condition is with the help of a six-month-long course of antibiotics that may also last 12 months, depending on the prognosis. The patient will be put in quarantine as well, so that he or she does not end up spreading this disease to anyone else. A voluntary medical practitioner or trained health worker will help in care giving and medicine administration under the instructions of the doctor. The medication will usually consist of four antimicrobial drugs or antibiotics which will stop the release of nutrition and oxygen to the bacteria so that it cannot develop and grow. This will also ensure that the bacteria gets killed eventually.

- Control of Infection: The spread of the infection is such that a single sneeze or cough can infect up to ten to fifteen people who are near the patient without proper masks and other gear to prevent the transmission. Therefore, it is the job of the hospital to ensure that proper infection control takes place by using ultraviolet light to sterilise the air around the area where the TB patients have been admitted.

One thing that the patient must remember about the treatment is that immediate and timely treatment with medication must be taken so that the patient is able to get cured. If the patient skips medicines or does not get treated on time, then the infection will come back again and again. And after a point, the patient's body and the bacteria will not be able to react to the medicines.

1504 people found this helpful

Tuberculosis - How To Tackle It?

Dr. Prashant Saxena 89% (52 ratings)
Pediatric interventional Pulmonology - Italy, MD - TB & Chest, Fellowship Training Intensive Care, Fellow College of Chest physicians, European Diploma in Respiratory Medicine, Interventional Pulmonology , Greece, European Diploma in Intensive Care Medicine, Fellow Indian college of critical care, Thoracoscopy ( France ), Pediatric interventional Pulmonology
Pulmonologist, Gurgaon
Tuberculosis - How To Tackle It?

Tuberculosis is a respiratory disease that is very infectious and usually affects the lungs. It is one of the deadliest diseases that have killed millions of people worldwide. According to WHO, 9 million people get infected with tuberculosis in a year. It is one of the top reasons for death among women aged between 15 to 44 years. Symptoms can range from cough, fever, weight loss and night sweats. Moreover, it is an airborne disease meaning that people having tuberculosis can infect many others around them through coughing, sneezing or sharing a glass or cup.

The main cause of tuberculosis is a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. However, there are two types of tuberculosis-

  1. Latent TB- In this condition, the bacteria causing TB is present in the body and is inactive. It is not contagious or results in any symptoms.
  2. Active TB- The bacteria causing TB is active and the person carrying it can infect others as well.

Diagnosis
The most common diagnostic test for tuberculosis is a skin test where an injection of PPD tuberculin which is an extract of the TB bacterium is injected into the skin. After 2 to 3 days, the doctor checks the injected site and if there is red swelling, it means that person has TB. Along with this the doctor also uses a stethoscope to gauge the condition of lungs. However, the skin test is not very accurate to know whether a person has TB or not.

Therefore, doctors also use blood tests, x-rays and sputum tests to find out whether a person has TB or not.

Treatments
Tuberculosis can be cured with medications. However, the correct medicines will depend on the type of TB you have and the period of treatment. If you have latent TB, then taking a single TB drug may be enough. But if you have active TB then you need to have proper medicines prescribed by a doctor for at least 6 months. Some common medicines used to treat TB (active) are:

Also, antibiotics and injections are used to treat drug-resistant TB that may take longer to cure.
When taking medications or any sort of drugs for TB, one needs to be careful and look out for any side effects that can occur due to TB medications. As medicines taken for TB can cause:

  1. Dark Urine
  2. Loss of Appetite
  3. Nausea or Vomiting
  4. Jaundice

For people suffering from Tb, it is important to follow the full course of medications and not to skip taking any drugs that have been prescribed your doctor. There is a program called Directly Observed Therapy (DOT), where the heath care helper administers and look after a TB patient to ensure that the correct course and medicines are given to the patient.

1092 people found this helpful

Tuberculosis - How To Handle It?

MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, DNB- Respiratory Disease, Diploma in Adult Respiratory Medicine
Pulmonologist, Mumbai
Tuberculosis -  How To Handle It?

Tuberculosis refers to an infectious disease associated with the lungs, which is mostly caused by bacteria. There are two forms of tuberculosis. These are pulmonary tuberculosis and extra-pulmonary tuberculosis. There are various forms of each as well. Here are the possible treatments for both pulmonary and extra-pulmonary tuberculosis.

What is pulmonary tuberculosis?

Pulmonary tuberculosis is a type of disease in which bacteria invades your lungs. It is possible that the bacteria in your lungs could just kill you. However, fortunately if you have been taking the right medicines for your bacterial infection you can get cured immediately. The name of the bacteria which causes tuberculosis is known as the Mycobacterium tuberculosis. However, mycobacterium tuberculosis can attack other parts of the body as well. When this happens, it is known as extra-pulmonary tuberculosis.

What is extra-pulmonary tuberculosis?

Extra-pulmonary tuberculosis is when tuberculosis occurs to parts of the body other than the lungs. There are many parts of the body which tuberculosis can occur to including the lymph nodes, the nervous system as well as the bone and joints. Luckily, it is easily curable.

Treatment for Pulmonary tuberculosis treatment

Firstly, it is worth noting that latent tuberculosis has no symptoms and there is no way you can pass it to another person either. However, it is still crucial that you take treatment for it as well. If you do not complete your treatment then your tuberculosis will progress to a very dangerous form of tuberculosis. This is known as multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis is sometimes abbreviated to MD-R TB. There are plenty of medicines which people are recommended to cure tuberculosis. These include.

1.        Isoniazid
2.        Rifampin
3.        Ethambutol
4.        Pyrazinamide

Treatment for Extra-pulmonary tuberculosis

Extra-pulmonary tuberculosis has pretty much the same symptoms as pulmonary tuberculosis. This is because extra-pulmonary tuberculosis is the exact same disease which occurs to the patient, it is just that it affects a different body part. Therefore, the exact treatment recommended for pulmonary tuberculosis can be used to cure extra-pulmonary tuberculosis. 
 

2587 people found this helpful

Tuberculosis - Know Forms Of It!

Dr. Gurmeet Singh Chabbra 89% (60 ratings)
MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, MD - Chest & TB
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
Tuberculosis - Know Forms Of It!

Tuberculosis (TB) is one of the most deadly diseases know globally. It is an infectious disease occurring in many developing and developed countries as well. However, more patients can be seen coming from developing nations. According to WHO (World Health Organisation), 9 million people suffer from TB in a year. Tuberculosis is one of the diseases leading to deaths among women aged between 15 to 40 years.

The main cause of TB is a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It is an infectious disease that is also contagious. However, tuberculosis can be of two varying types:

  1. Latent TB- In this case, the bacteria causing TB remains inactive in a person’s body and does not show any signs and symptoms of TB. However, it may become active. An estimated 2 million people have latent TB and need to be treated.
  2. Active TB- The bacteria causing TB is active and results in various symptoms which can be transmitted from one person to another.

Some of the signs and symptoms of active TB are:

  1. Severe Cough
  2. Coughing up Blood (Hemoptysis)
  3. Chest Pain
  4. Loss of Weight
  5. Fatigue
  6. Fever
  7. Night Sweats
  8. Decreased Appetite
  9. Feeling Cold
  10. Having Difficulty in Breathing
  11. Swollen Lymph Nodes

There are other types of TB occurring among people that have many more symptoms:

  1. Skeletal TB (Pott’s Disease)
  2. TB Meningitis - headaches, mental changes and coma
  3. TB Arthritis - usually pain in knees and joints
  4. Genitourinary TB - dysuria, flank pain, increased frequency, masses or lumps
  5. Gastrointestinal TB - problem in swallowing, ulcers, mal-absorption and diarrhoea
  6. Miliary TB - It is widespread dissemination of TB. It is basically small millet like nodules that occur in organs
  7. Pleural TB - This basically refers to the respiratory problems of empyema and pleural effusions
  8. Multidrug-resistant Tuberculosis (MDR TB) - People suffering from TB and taking inadequate or inappropriate TB medications may develop multidrug-resistant TB
  9. XDR TB - Patients being drug resistant to tuberculosis drugs. XDR stands for extensively drug-resistant.
  10. Caseous TB - Necrotic (dead and dying) tissue infected with TB has a dry and cheesy appearance.

These were some of the symptoms associated with various types of Tuberculosis. However, its diagnosis may range from doing a skin test to blood tests to x-rays to sputum tests. Along with this doctors use a stethoscope to listen to the sounds of lungs.

What you need to keep in mind is that TB affects other parts of the body as well. If you are having tuberculosis in your kidneys, then it results in loss of blood through urine. So you need to observant and report to your doctor accordingly.

As TB is a contagious disease, its treatments require certain medications which should be atleast consumed for a period of 6 months. For effective results and better recovery, doctors advise patients to complete the full course of medications.

2825 people found this helpful

Tuberculosis - How To Manage It?

MBBS, DNB - Pulmonary Medicine, Allergy & Sleep Disorders, DTCD
Pulmonologist, Navi Mumbai
Tuberculosis - How To Manage It?

Tuberculosis is one of the most serious infectious diseases and can easily spread from one person to another when the bacterias enter the air through a sneeze or a cough. The disease is partly preventable by vaccines. It was once upon a time quite rare, but today has become quite common in urban areas. The emergence of HIV is one of the main reasons for this. HIV is an immune system disorder that weakens the body’s ability to fight back against infections. With time, the virus causing the disease has evolved and become resistant to many drugs used to treat it.

Tuberculosis is also more commonly seen in slum areas of the cities. This is because of a lack of ventilation and living in close proximity that makes it easy for the disease to spread from one person to another. Limited access to safe drinking water and proper sanitation also reduces immunity and increases the risk of tuberculosis.

To control the spread of tuberculosis, it is important to treat it and keep away from other people while being treated. People also need to be made aware of the disease and its symptoms. It is important for the general public to understand that tuberculosis can be treated. As with most chronic diseases, the earlier treatment is started, the easier it is.

Thus, if you notice any of the early symptoms of tuberculosis such as

Then, you must consult a doctor immediately.

Tuberculosis can be diagnosed through Sputum analysis. It is important to note that this test is not foolproof as it can give a false positive or false negative result. For this reason, this may be followed by a chest x-ray or diagnostic Bronchoscopy if required. Treatment for tuberculosis takes the form of oral antibiotics. The disease is no longer contagious after the medication is taken for a few weeks.

However, taking the full course of medication is essential to stopping medication early can make the bacteria resistant to the drug. Tuberculosis caused by drug-resistant bacteria is much harder to treat.
Thus, to reduce the number of cases of tuberculosis in urban areas, people must be made aware of the disease and its treatment. Proper sanitation and ventilation in their living areas should also be provided.

2607 people found this helpful

Can Antibiotics Help Healing Infections & Swelling?

Dr. Mithunesh Sayasikamal 90% (1516 ratings)
BDS
Dentist, Betul
Can Antibiotics Help Healing Infections & Swelling?
Asking your doctor if antibiotic medicine can be taken is advisable as it can help in reducing the infection and swelling. It can also be taken after the treatment for faster healing. 
1 person found this helpful
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