An illness that is sometimes confused with the flu.
Every 24 March, World Tuberculosis Dayis commemorated worldwide.
Tuberculosis (abbreviated as TB) is an infection caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which mainly affects the lungs. However, cases have been reported in which it also affects other organs.
It is estimated that TB is responsible for 1.5 million deaths globally each year.
The disease is usually airborne. When a person infected with TB coughs, sneezes, or spits, the person coughs, sneezes, or spits out TB bacilli into the air. These airborne substances can easily be inhaled by other people and cause them to become infected.
People who already have the tubercle bacilli increase their chances of getting the disease by as much as 10%. Likewise, people who have a very weakened immune system, malnutrition, diabetes, or who smoke frequently are more likely to develop TB at some point.
When someone begins to develop tuberculosis, symptoms develop gradually. The initial symptoms are usually as follows:
- -Much coughing (sometimes with blood)
- -Chest pain
- -Constant fever
- -Sweating at night
- Unexplained weight loss
The symptoms do not necessarily have to occur all together. In most cases, symptoms are mild for many months, causing the infected person to not recognize that he or she has this infection. Unfortunately, by the time a person is found to have TB, it is very likely that he or she has already spread the infection to others through the air. Similarly, when you hear someone coughing or sneezing, the least that crosses the mind of others is that the person has tuberculosis. This spread of infection is more likely to be transmitted if the infected person is in an enclosed area where there is unlikely to be adequate ventilation or open windows to allow fresh air to enter.
A person with active tuberculosis can infect 10 to 15 people over the course of a year. In addition, if you are HIV-positive, you are at greater risk of developing HIV infection more quickly.
WHAT KIND OF PEOPLE ARE MOST AT RISK?
This infection usually affects adults in their most productive years of life. However, this does not mean that it cannot affect people at another time in their lives.
Those who are HIV-positive are 20 to 30 times more likely to actively develop TB. The combination of TB and HIV is lethal, as one increases the progression of the other. Not only people with HIV are more likely to become infected, but also all those with very low defenses or immune system problems.
As with other diseases, active tobacco use increases the likelihood of developing tuberculosis by up to 20%.
For TB, there are three categories: resistant, multidrug-resistant and extensively resistant.
Resistant TB occurs when the infection is resistant to the drugs given to fight it. This is the one that comes off in multi and extremely resistant.
In the case of multidrug-resistant, it occurs when the infection cannot be fought with the two drugs that are most commonly used to eradicate the condition. When a person has TB, it is best not to be treated at just any health center, but by someone who is an expert in TB.
Extensively resistant, the least common type of tuberculosis, develops when the infection is resistant to basically all of the drugs that are given to cure it. People who are infected with HIV or who have a weakened immune system are at increased risk of being diagnosed with this type. It is therefore essential to always contact someone who is an expert in these cases.