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Tuberculosis – TB

tb specialist in borivali

What is Tuberculosis (TB)?

Tuberculosis is a contagious disease that is transmitted from person to person through coughing and breathing in airborne droplets that contain bacteria. TB primarily affects the lungs
but can affect any part of the body. Dr. Parthiv Shah is a TB specialist in Borivali, Mumbai, and has vast experience in managing tuberculosis cases.

What causes TB?

TB is caused by slow-growing bacteria called mycobacterium tuberculosis. When these bacteria enter the lungs, they are usually walled off into harmless capsules (granulomas)
in the lung, causing the infection but not a disease. These capsules may later wake up weeks, months, or decades later causing active TB disease.

Who gets TB infection and TB disease?

People who are more likely to acquire TB infection are the following:

  • People recently exposed to someone who has symptomatic TB disease.
  • People who live in congregate settings with high-risk persons.
  • People who live or have lived in countries where TB is common; or
  • People who are health care workers who are in contact with TB patients when proper infection control procedures are not followed.

Many people who acquire TB infection do not have symptoms and may never develop TB disease. These people have latent TB infections (LTBI). However, people with TB infection who have weaker immune systems due to diabetes, HIV infection, kidney failure, or take
certain immunosuppressive medications such as TNF-alpha blockers may be more likely to develop active TB disease with symptoms.

What are the signs and symptoms of TB disease?

Symptoms are usually mild and tend to present over a period of weeks, months. TB disease symptoms are often initially mistaken for a smoker’s cough, allergies, or chronic bronchitis from a lingering cold or flu infection. TB infection most often affects the lungs but can cause problems in other parts of the body. The classic symptoms of TB in the lungs include:

  • Cough lasting more than two weeks
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Low-grade fever
  • Night sweats

How is TB diagnosed?

TB disease is often diagnosed by microscopic examination of two separate samples of sputum (phlegm) often collected on different days. The sputum is first looked at under a microscope using a special dye (acid-fast bacillus AFB stain) to see if any TB bacteria can be found. It is not always positive as there may be only a small number of bacteria so the culture is always needed. Sputum cultures are done to grow the bacteria to confirm the diagnosis and determine the best combination of drugs for treatment. Sputum for genetic testing for TB bacilli (Gene expert) gives a better yield. Dr. Parthiv Shah- a TB specialist in Borivali, Mumbai, would occasionally do a Bronchoscopy to obtain lung samples if a patient is unable to produce sputum. In addition to these tests, chest X-rays and CT chest imaging are performed to evaluate for any lung abnormalities. If TB is suspected in a different part of the body, a different sample or a tissue biopsy may be needed.

How is TB treated?

Tuberculosis disease is usually treated with 4 anti-TB medications for at least six months. If TB is in the bones, brain, or other hard-to-reach areas, treatment will be longer. This can mean taking 6-12 pills per day! Many patients find this difficult without the support of workers trained in providing directly observed treatment (DOT). DOT is the universal standard for treating TB worldwide. DOT helps detect side effects early and prevents missed doses and breaks in treatment that reduce the benefit of treatment and can lead to drug-resistant strains of bacteria.

Drug-Resistant TB requires Longer treatment from 11 months to 2 ½ years.

How can I prevent TB?

TB is spread by tiny airborne droplets created by coughing. It is not spread by sharing food, utensils, drinks, touching, or having sex. Dr. Parthiv shah -TB specialist in Borivali is of the opinion that Covering the mouth and nose when coughing is an important way to stop the spread of TB and other airborne diseases. If you have TB disease and are coughing, it is important to wear a mask and limit contact with others until your health care provider tells you that you are no longer. contagious while on treatment. Seeking care right away and finding out you have TB is the best way to stop its spread since the treatment of the disease helps you not be contagious, decreasing transmission.

Common side effects of anti TB drugs and it’s treatment

  • Do not take all the medicines together.
  • Do not keep yourself hungry.
  • Do not keep a gap of more than 2-3 hours between two meals.
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol consumption as it aggravates acidity.
  • Inform your treatment supporter, health worker, or doctor without any delay.

Burning Sensation In Lower Part Of Chest & Pain In Upper Abdomen

Rashes With Or Without Itching on Hands Or Legs

  • Apply moisturizing cream
  • Do not expose the rashes to sunlight.
  • Rashes usually subside with time
  • Inform your treatment supporter, health worker or doctor without any delay

Nausea & Vomiting, Loose Stools / Diarrhoea

  • Do not take all the medicines together.
  • Take medicines with little water or milk at bedtime.
  • Stay hydrated (drink enough water)
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol consumption as it aggravates these sufferings.
  • Inform your treatment supporter, health worker, or doctor without any delay.
  • Do not take any medicines on your own Do not stop or reduce the dose of anti-TB medicines on

Headache, Giddiness & Weakness

  • Have nutritious food and enough water.
  • Take proper rest.
  • Follow a healthy lifestyle (yoga, meditation, etc.).
  • Stay positive.
  • Inform your treatment supporter, health worker, or doctor without any delay.
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