|Name:||Tuberculosis Education and Treatment|
|About:||This community is for people who have been diagnosed with latent or active TB disease, and their loved ones. The community focus is education, treatment, and support.|
Despite what many people may think, TB is not uncommon, even in the western world. Over one-third of the world's population has been exposed to TB, and new infections occur at a rate of one per second. Not everyone infected develops active TB disease; asymptomatic, latent TB infection is most common. However, one in ten latent infections will progress to active TB disease, which, if left untreated, kills more than half of its victims. A rising number of people in the developed world are contracting tuberculosis because their immune systems are compromised by immunosuppressive drugs, substance abuse, or HIV/AIDS.
When the disease becomes active, 75% of the cases are pulmonary TB. When people suffering from active pulmonary TB cough, sneeze, speak, kiss, or spit, they expel infectious aerosol droplets. A single sneeze can release up to 40,000 droplets. Each one of these droplets may transmit the disease, since the infectious dose of tuberculosis is very low and the inhalation of just a single bacterium can cause a new infection.
Symptoms include chest pain, coughing up blood, and a productive, prolonged cough for more than three weeks. Systemic symptoms include fever, chills, night sweats, appetite loss, weight loss, pallor, and often a tendency to fatigue very easily.
In the other 25% of active cases, the infection moves from the lungs, causing other kinds of TB more common in immunosuppressed persons and young children. Extrapulmonary infection sites include the pleura, the central nervous system in meningitis, the lymphatic system in scrofula of the neck, the genitourinary system in urogenital tuberculosis, and bones and joints in Pott's disease of the spine. An especially serious form is disseminated TB, more commonly known as miliary tuberculosis. Although extrapulmonary TB is not contagious, it may co-exist with pulmonary TB, which is contagious.
Treatment for TB uses antibiotics to kill the bacteria. The two antibiotics most commonly used are rifampicin and isoniazid. However, instead of the short course of antibiotics typically used to cure other bacterial infections, TB requires much longer periods of treatment (around 6 to 12 months) to entirely eliminate mycobacteria from the body. Latent TB treatment usually uses a single antibiotic, while active TB disease is best treated with combinations of several antibiotics, to reduce the risk of the bacteria developing antibiotic resistance. People with these latent infections are treated to prevent them from progressing to active TB disease later in life. However, treatment using Rifampin and Pyrazinamide is not risk-free. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notified healthcare professionals of revised recommendations against the use of rifampin plus pyrazinamide for treatment of latent tuberculosis infection, due to high rates of hospitalization and death from liver injury associated with the combined use of these drugs.
|Interests:||49: active, active tb, antibiotic resistance, antibiotics, appetite loss, asymptomatic, bcg vaccine, bloody cough, chills, consumption, coughing, disease, exposure, fatigue, fever, genitourinary system, hiv/aids, immunosuppressive drugs, isoniazid, latent, latent tb, liver function, liver problems, liver tests, lung disease, lungs, lymphatic system, mdr, mdr tb, mdrtb, meningitis, miliary tuberculosis, mycobacterium tuberculosis, night sweats, outbreaks, pallor, pott's disease, rifampicin, scrofula of the neck, substance abuse, tb, treatment, tuberculosis, urogenital tuberculosis, weight loss, workplace exposure, xdr, xdr tb, xdrtb|
|Account type:||Free Patient|