10 Symptoms of Tuberculosis

Author
By iliriana
Reviewed
Reviewed: Dr. Mera
Jul 14, 2018
Medical Expert Medical Expert

Tuberculosis is a disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It is a bacterial infection that mostly affects the lungs, but other parts of the human body can be affected as well. Tuberculosis is a highly contagious disease and it spreads through the air when an infected person spreads the bacteria by coughing, sneezing, and talking.

There are two forms of tuberculosis: latent tuberculosis and active tuberculosis. Latent tuberculosis means that the bacterium remains inside the human body but in an inactive state. These persons are not contagious, but the infection can become active at any point. Active tuberculosis, on the other hand, means that the person is contagious, transmitting the disease to others.

Tuberculosis can affect anyone at any age. It is believed that around one third of world’s population have latent tuberculosis. The primary screening method for TB is the tuberculin skin test, while the treatment is with antibiotics. In some countries, BCG injections are given immediately after birth in order to vaccinate against tuberculosis. Tuberculosis symptoms include:

Symptom #1: Persistent Cough

Because tuberculosis mostly affects the lungs, then symptoms such as a cough, difficulty breathing, or chest pain are quite common. Lung tissue is affected due to the strong immune response elicited by the rapid multiplication of organisms. If the infection is not contained by the immune system, a persistent dry cough can develop. A persistent cough lasting for three weeks or longer should be a warning sign. First, the cough is dry and irritating, but as the disease progresses it tends to get worse, eventually resulting in the production of a lot of phlegm (sputum) and even the presence of blood.

Tuberculosis

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