Wednesday, 17 December 2014

What Is Tuberculosis?

Welcome back my fellow learners, today we are going to learn about TB.

Tuberculosis, also referred to as TB, is a bacterial infection which spreads through the lymph nodes and bloodstream to organs within a persons body. It is mostly seen in the lungs. Many people that are exposed to TB don't develop symptoms, due to the fact the bacteria will sleep within a persons body. However, should the immune system weaken, as with the case with individuals suffering from HIV or the elderly, TB bacteria can wake up. In its waking state, TB bacteria will cause the death of healthy tissue of the organs they infect. Active TB is deadly should it be left untreated.

Because the bacteria which causes tuberculosis is airborne, this disease can be highly contagious. Infection is occur should a person be exposed to someone that has TB on a daily basis, like living or working with someone in close quarters who has this active disease. Even then, the bacteria usually stay inert, or inactive after it has invaded a body, and only a small amount of people that are infected with TB will ever have the disease active. The remaining few will have what's known as a latent TB infection, this means they show no symptoms of infection, and will not be able to spread the disease, unless theirs becomes active.

However, because these dormant infections can become active, even people that show no signs of any symptoms should get medical attention. Medication will get rid of any inactive bacteria before they wake up.

TB was once an extremely virulent and widespread disease. It was however, nearly wiped out with antibiotics that were developed in 1950, however, the disease has reared its ugly head again in new and more potent forms, multi drug-resistant TB and extensively drug-resistant TB. Today, these new and dangerous forms of the disease -- resistant to some of the commonly used drug treatments, have made a public health crisis in several large cities around the world. Should you have TB, whether in its active or dormant form, seek medical treatment immediately. 

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