Tuberculosis (TB) is a very prevalent and grave bacterial infection. It is life threatening and contagious which spreads by living in close contact with other TB Patients.
Tuberculosis is a specific disease caused by a bacterium, Mycobacterium Tuberculosis. It primarily affects the lungs. Tuberculosis is a contagious disease; it could spread by inhaling the bacteria from infected sputum. These bacteria are exhaled in air when a TB Patient sneezes, spits or coughs. People who are in near proximity of the TB patient could possibly breathe in these bacteria.
Once a person breathes in the tuberculosis bacterium their lungs get infected and might cause pneumonia as an early symptom. Occasionally the lymph nodes in lungs might get involved with TB and thus get enlarged. In the inception TB is not very acute as it can be contained easily by our immune system. Our body forms a scar over the tuberculosis bacterium thus rendering it inactive. Such a patient is less likely to spread Tuberculosis to any other patient. This stage of infliction is called Primary Tuberculosis. With time the tuberculosis scar becomes calcified by deposition of calcium from blood on them and inflates within our body.
A tuberculosis scar could be easily seen on an X-Ray film. These structures are referred as granuloma. A granuloma appears like a round marble on X-Ray and initially is little distinguishable from cancer. Few years back a tentative cure of tuberculosis was a remote possibility. It resulted in high mortality and morbidity rate amongst the inflicted people. The advent of chemotherapy however has lantern a positive hope.
TB Chemotherapy drugs are given to be consumed orally. TB requires two regimen of chemotherapy in a day or two to three doses in a week for a period of 6 months. TB Chemotherapy drugs are often given in combination with isoniazid. The drugs like Rifampin (Rifadin), Ethambutol (Myambutol), and Pyrazinamide are administered with isoniazid. In the first few months of the chemotherapy all the four drugs are consumed to eradicate any strain of the tuberculosis bacterium. Subsequently the dose could be reduced to two drugs depending up on the sustainability of the patient. The treatment of tuberculosis continues for duration of 6 months to one year, this is usually decided by the physical health of the patient.
Tuberculosis is a deadly disease, every year two billion people get affected by Mycobacterium Tuberculosis the survival rate is very less. But TB Chemotherapy has been proved a boon for the anomaly.