Thursday, June 9, 2011


An innocent and prolonged cough for 2 weeks or more with flem or sputum can be sign of lung TB.  It was an eye opener when i visited the TB institute in Bangalore and got to know the symptoms of  TB from the staff over there.  The other symptoms are loss of appetite, mild fever, with running nose etc.  To rule out TB one has to get tested in the labs or get chest x-ray done in the hospitals designated for TB.  TB is infectious when it spreads through sputum, and it is vital that the patient concerned should be aware that it can be cured.  The govt. of  India has provided all the patients an avenue for free treatment, which can vary from 6 months to one year. 

In view of the epidemic nature of this disease which is contagious, it is vital people with symptoms should get themselves checked in the primary health centres, govt hospitals, and certain designated private hospitals where the treatment is offered free of cost.  The infection of lungs which is known as Pulmonary TB is dangerous, and it is contagious.  Generally the elderly or infants are prone to this disease.  Other types of TB is not contagious or infectious.  People who are diabetic are at greater risk of contracting such a disease due to weak immunity. 

TB has been in vogue from times immemorial, from the days of mummies in Egypt, TB has been associated with Vampireism before Industrial revolution.  In 1882 this dreaded disease was identified with the isolation of the bacillus causing the disease by Robert Koch.  He was awarded the Nobel prize for the discovery in 1905.  In 1960 september National Institute of  TB was inaugrated in Bangalore in the palace donated by the King.  The current office premise is located next to Cauvery theatre on the Bellary road.

TB is considered to be one of the disease of poverty, but it can spread to anyone who is weak in immunity. Thus in 2011 legislation in some countries have been passed to authorising coercive tuberculosis control measure.  The treatment for TB is by means of regular intake anti-biotics, and this is provided free of cost in all govt facilities.

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