Tuberculosis: What is tuberculosis? Tuberculosis (TB) is a bacterial infection that attacks and destroys our body tissues. This disease is caused by bacteria called Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which spreads through the air. TB bacteria attack rapidly those whose immune system is weak. Especially those who have been suffering from HIV or cancer. Mostly this disease affects the lungs of the person. But it can affect the bones, lymph glands, intestines, heart, brain as well as other organs.
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How common is tuberculosis?
Tuberculosis infection spreads rapidly in many cases. People who have a weak ability to fight disease can get this disease. When it starts, this disease can spread rapidly to others as well. In such a situation, the people mentioned below are at higher risk of getting TB:
If the person is suffering from HIV or any other disease that weakens the immune system.
- Those who are close to people suffering from tuberculosis.
- People who take care of TB patients, such as doctors and nurses.
- Traveling to areas where a large number of TB patients live.
- People living in unhygienic and infected areas.
Types of Tuberculosis
When tuberculosis affects the lungs, it is called Lung TB (Pulmonary Tuberculosis) and when it occurs outside the lungs, it is called extrapulmonary tuberculosis. It is also classified as active or latent. Active TB is contagious and can have many symptoms. However, the latent does not show any symptoms and is not contagious. Know in detail about the types of Tuberculosis:
The two main types of tuberculosis are active and latent TB. Active TB is sometimes also called TB disease. When it occurs, many symptoms are seen in the patient and it is contagious. The symptoms of active TB depend on whether it is pulmonary or extrapulmonary. Common symptoms of active TB are as follows
- Unexplained Weight Loss
- Loss of Appetite
- Night sweats
If active tuberculosis is not treated well, it can be life-threatening.
This type of tuberculosis is called latent TB. If you have a latent TB infection, it means that you may have TB bacteria in your body, but it is inactive, that is you do not feel any symptoms. Latent tuberculosis can turn into active tuberculosis. This risk is higher in people who have weakened immunity due to some disease or underlying condition. Now let’s know about the types of active tuberculosis:
Lung TB (Pulmonary Tuberculosis)
Lung TB (Pulmonary Tuberculosis) is an active TB, which is related to the lungs. You can become a victim of this TB through the air by coming in contact with an infected person. Because its germs live in the air for several hours.
Know what are the symptoms of Tuberculosis?
There are no symptoms in the initial days after infection with tuberculosis. But when this infection starts taking the form of a disease, then its symptoms start appearing. These symptoms depend on which organ TB has affected. For example, cough for three weeks, coughing up blood, chest pain, fever, excessive night sweats, weight loss, loss of appetite, weakness, dizziness, etc. Apart from this, other symptoms of TB can also occur. If you have any kind of problem, then definitely consult a doctor once.
Tuberculosis bacteria attack rapidly on those whose immune system is weak. Its risk may be higher in people who have been suffering from diseases like HIV or cancer. TB disease mostly occurs in the lungs. However, it can have negative effects on the bones, lymph glands, intestines, heart, brain as well as other organs. Prevention of tuberculosis is possible, if only a few things are kept in mind.
When to see a doctor for Tuberculosis?
If you suddenly start losing weight without any reason, you start sweating profusely at night, if your cough does not stop for three weeks, then these symptoms may be of tuberculosis. In such a situation, you must show your doctor, because sometimes such symptoms can be of other diseases as well.
Know the causes of Tuberculosis
What causes Tuberculosis?
Tuberculosis (TB) bacteria most commonly enter a person’s body through the air. Another person can also become infected by coming in contact with the cough or sneeze of an infected person. After entering the body, this virus stays asleep for a long time and does not show any symptoms. But when the body’s immune system fails to fight the virus, it starts an attack. Firstly, it attacks the lungs and damages the blood vessels. This is where the symptoms of TB begin to appear.
The risk factor of Tuberculosis increases in this way if:
- you have HIV or AIDS
- you have diabetes
- any type of cancer
- you are malnourished
- you are receiving chemotherapy or other cancer treatment
- body weight loss
- taking drugs for organ transplant
- drinking alcohol regularly
It is not that if you do not have any of the diseases mentioned above, then you cannot get tuberculosis (TB). Always consult a doctor in such a case.
This is how Tuberculosis is detected
Note: The information given here is not a substitute for any medical advice. Always take the advice of your doctor.
At the beginning of the treatment of tuberculosis (TB), the doctor tries to know your medical history by asking you simple questions. Like you do not live near a TB patient. This is followed by a chest X-ray and laboratory examination of sputum or mucus. Apart from this, it can also be detected by looking at the TB reaction in the skin through injection.
This is how Tuberculosis is treated
Nowadays, different antibiotics or antibacterial drugs are used together to treat tuberculosis (TB). This treatment lasts continuously for six to nine months, after which even once in between its bacteria start growing again. So, even if you start feeling better a few weeks after starting the medicine, it is important to take the full course.
Apart from this, the help of Wireless Observed Therapy (WOT) can also be taken.
The following tests may also be done to detect the symptoms of tuberculosis, including:
- skin test
- blood test
Tuberculosis can be fatal if not treated properly.
Make these lifestyle changes to deal with Tuberculosis
- Take medicine regularly as prescribed by the doctor
- Stay away from alcohol, cigarette etc.
- Keep a cloth over your mouth while coughing and sneezing
- Do not get too close to another coughing or sneezing person
- Wear gloves before touching an infected person or anything related to him
- If the doctor has prescribed you medicines, then take all the medicines on time and consult the doctor from time to time.
- Do not leave your medicines in the middle. If you leave the medicine in between, the germs can become active again.
- If you are infected, try to cover your mouth while coughing and sneezing. This will prevent the infection from spreading further
- Wash your hands after coughing or sneezing
- Stay in open air and good environment, this will give relief in infection soon
- Do not use public transport until you are completely infection free
- Be sure to vaccinate against BCG (Bacillus Calmette Guerin Tuberculosis)
- Cover the face with a face mask before leaving the house or going to a crowded area
- Avoid going to crowded places
- Do not live in low light and dirty places and avoid going there
- Keep distance from TB patients
- TB patient should stay in well ventilated and well lit room
- Do not use AC. Always keep the fan on and keep the windows of the room open, so that bacteria can come out.
If you have any questions about your tuberculosis problem, please be sure to consult your doctor.