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What Is Tuberculosis?

Tuberculosis, often referred to as TB, is a highly infectious bacterial disease that primarily affects the lungs. With an estimated 10 million people falling ill and 1.4 million dying from the disease in 2019 alone, tuberculosis remains a significant global health concern. In this blog post, we will delve into the fundamental aspects of tuberculosis, including its symptoms, diagnosis, and the strategies to manage and prevent its spread. Let’s explore the crucial information about tuberculosis and gain a better understanding of this prevalent infectious disease.

Understanding Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis, commonly known as TB, is a contagious infection that primarily affects the lungs. Here’s what you need to know about this disease:

  • Causes: Tuberculosis is caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which spreads through the air when an infected individual coughs or sneezes.
  • Transmission: It can be transmitted from person to person through inhalation of respiratory droplets containing the bacteria.
  • Risk Factors: Certain factors such as weakened immune system, close contact with an infected person, and living in overcrowded or unsanitary conditions increase the risk of contracting Tuberculosis.

In summary, understanding Tuberculosis involves recognizing its causes, transmission, and risk factors to effectively prevent and manage the disease.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Tuberculosis can exhibit a range of symptoms, some of which may be overlooked as signs of other illnesses. It’s crucial to keep an eye out for symptoms such as:

  • Persistent cough that lasts for more than three weeks
  • Chest pain
  • Coughing up blood or sputum
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Fever and night sweats

When it comes to diagnosis, healthcare providers use various tests including:

  • Tuberculin skin test (TST)
  • Blood tests
  • Chest X-rays
  • Sputum tests

These diagnostic methods help to confirm the presence of tuberculosis and determine the most suitable treatment approach. If you experience any of these symptoms, consult a healthcare professional for timely diagnosis and appropriate management.