Lets unite to eliminate Tuberculosis

The WHO statistics of 2014 gives an estimated figure of 2.2 million cases of Tuberculosis in India out of 9 million globally.


Tuberculosis or commonly called TB is an infection caused by germ 'Mycobacterium tuberculosis' and is spread across socio-economic division in India. Though this infection mostly attacks the in lungs but can also affect other parts of the body like the spine, called spinal tuberculosis or Pott's spine. Tuberculosis is highly contagious and spreads through air. A single sneeze releases upto 40,000 droplets. Each of these droplets may transmit the disease. 1 in 10 infections eventually progress to active tuberculosis, which, if left untreated, kills more than 50% of those infected.

According to Animesh Arya, Sr. Consultant in Respiratory medicine, Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute, “India is among the most affected countries in the world when it comes to Tuberculosis. The WHO statistics of 2014 gives an estimated figure of 2.2 million cases of Tuberculosis in India out of 9 million globally. Children below 5 years are most vulnerable age group to acquire infection from adult cases. Though the incidence of childhood TB is under-reported because of lack of diagnostic facilities, still it accounts for 10 percent of adult TB cases. Tuberculosis is a life-threatening infectious disease which is responsible for increasing mortality rate in India. The situation is getting worse every year as many patients succumb to this dreadful disease. Late detection and improper treatment makes the situation more complicated. Patients with symptoms of TB must visit the doctor at the earliest as with advanced treatment available for tuberculosis it can be cured”.

“Many complications can arise if TB is not cured on time such as MDR (multi-drug resistant) tuberculosis, meningitis or CNS TB, chronic or suppurative lung disease, bone and joint problems,  liver and kidney disease etc.  Another factor can be low immunity and lack of hygiene which tends to develop this disease. So it is advisable to maintain a good immunity and also avoid coming in contact with people having Tuberculosis. Few basic hygiene practices should be adopted like covering their mouth while coughing, refrain from spitting in public areas and  to follow proper medication regimen”. Dr Arya added.

According to Sweta Gupta Clinical Director and Sr. Consultant - Fertility Solutions, Medicover Fertility, "Tuberculosis causes tubal damage, resulting in rigid , pipe like tubes which further impairs transport of egg from the ovary.  T.B also causes endometrial damage ( lining of the uterus where embryo implants) in 50-75 percent of cases of genital T.B. There is decrease in endometrial blood flow resulting in intrauterine adhesions which further hampers the implantation of embryo in the uterine cavity.  When endometrium is damaged due to T.B, it may lead to recurrent implantation failure, miscarriage and recurrent pregnancy loss. T.B infection can also result in decreased ovarian reserve ( reduced number and quality of eggs) which further causes subfertility in women with genital tuberculosis"

What causes tuberculosis?

When immunity is compromised due to an irregular lifestyle and unhealthy habits Alcohol and smoking. More than 15 cigarettes a day increase your risk by 4 times.

An unbalanced diet (includes malnourishment & obesity) Immuno-suppressants like steroids Diabetes and HIV-AIDS

Common symptoms of tuberculosis

Persistent cough for two weeks or more, Blood in sputum, unexplained weight loss, Lack of appetite, Night sweats, Persistent fever - any grade, be it low or high - for two weeks or more.

Tuberculosis Types

Tuberculosis is divided into two categories: Active disease and Latent infection. The most common form of active TB is lung Disease, but it may invade other organs, so-called “Extrapulmonary TB”.


Moderate (healthy levels of) alcohol consumption and no smoking.

Exercise helps in building immunity.

Healthy hygiene habits plays a vital role in prevention.

Balanced diet- a meal should include pulses, legumes, seasonal fruits, green and fresh vegetables.


Most of the time tuberculosis can be cured when the right medication.

The precise type and length of antibiotic treatment depends on a person's age, overall health, potential resistance to drugs, whether the TB is latent or active, and the location of infection (i.e. the lungs, brain, kidneys).

People with latent TB may need just one kind of TB antibiotics, whereas people with active TB (particularly MDR-TB) will often require a prescription of multiple drugs.

Antibiotics are usually required to be taken for a relatively long time. The standard length of time for a course of TB antibiotics is about 6 months.

All TB medication is toxic to the liver, and although side effects are uncommon, when they do occur, they can be quite serious. Potential side effects should be reported to a health care provider and include: Dark urine, Fever, Jaundice, Loss of appetite, Nausea and vomiting.

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