Tuberculosis: 15 Must-Know Facts (Part 2)

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We really surprised you with the first set of seven must-know facts about tuberculosis in our part one article, and we have finally returned with part two to give you the full scoop! Everyone should be informed about the risks and prevention of this infectious disease, and we are going to help you do just that. To discover the top eight must-know facts about tuberculosis, all you have to do is read along!

Number Eight: Tuberculosis Can Come Back

Even if you have contracted TB and fought it off, that doesn’t mean you are in the clear. The nature of TB often reappears in people who have had it before, making these people extremely at risk for getting the disease all over again. It is important to monitor the disease and regularly get checked out if you have had it before.

Number Seven: The Blood Test

If you feel that you may have TB, there are two methods to detecting the infection. The blood test method takes a sample of the blood in question, and determines how that particular immune system reacts to TB bacteria.

Number Six: The Skin Test

The other method, a Mantoux tuberculin skin test, is performed by injecting tuberculin into the arm. A health professional later analyzes the reaction to the injection to determine if the disease is present.

Number Five: When Should I Get Tested?

Not everyone needs to be tested for this rare disease, but some lifestyles make the onset of the disease more probable. People who should get tested are those who have HIV, have been around a patient with TB, have symptoms, work in places that TB is common (homeless shelter, migrant camp, prison, nursing homes), or use illegal drugs.

Number Four: How Tuberculosis is Fought

The body has an amazing system for fighting off diseases like TB. Strong immune systems will work to build a sort of wall (called tubercles) around the bacteria to prevent its spread through the body. When the wall is efficient, the bacteria is trapped and basically put to sleep. Thus is how latent TB is formed in healthy persons. These people finally get sick from the disease when the immune system is not strong enough to fight it.

Number Three: The Bacteria

The bacteria that is responsible for the formation of TB is a specific type called Mycobacterium Tuberculosis. This bacterium is characterized for its tendency to attack the lungs, but can also possibly affect the kidney, spine, and even the brain.

Number Two: The History

The first mention made of tuberculosis in all of history in in the 1768 (first edition) Encyclopedia Britannica. Here, TB is referred to as “an illness that consumes the lungs”. Since this record, little was known about TB until an army doctor by the name of Jean Antoine Villemin proved that the disease spreads from person to person in 1865.

Number One: The Major Outbreak

In the 19th century, the notorious disease reported to have killed as many as one-fourth of the entire world’s inhabitants. Frederic Chopin and the Bronte sisters were among the victims. We hope you enjoyed our list of the 15 must-know facts about tuberculosis.

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