Tuberculosis

Home Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis

In the old days, tuberculosis was commonly known as Consumption because that describes the illness as it wastes or consumes its victims.
Nowadays, tuberculosis is a treatable disease with millions of healthy survivors to prove it!
The Peermed team is extremely experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of TB - if you have any concerns come and talk to us

Tuberculosis Is Curable

Tuberculosis has reached epidemic proportions in South Africa, and yet it does not have to be this way.

The majority of cases of TB can be managed, treated and cured. If you or any of your loved ones suspect that they have TB, act immediately. The longer TB remains untreated, the more people can become infected.

Remember that all healthcare issues are treated with the utmost confidence at Peermed.

How does my Peermed doctor diagnose TB?

There are various methods we use for diagnosis:

  • Chest x-rays
  • Analysis of sputum (mucus
  • Skin tests

The link between TB and HIV

Attempts to eradicate TB in South Africa have been hampered by the HIV/Aids epidemic. Because HIV sufferers have lowered immune systems, they are at a higher risk of contracting tuberculosis.

HIV patients must be treated regularly for the presence of TB as it is very important to begin medication as soon as possible.

Your Peermed GP will work out a comprehensive treatment which will work alongside your ARV medication.

What is Tuberculosis?

Tuberculosis, or TB, is an infection most commonly found in the lungs. It is usually spread from one person to another by breathing infected air. If someone has a weakened immune system (such as an HIV sufferer), the body may battle to contain the bacteria and the TB may spread to other parts of the body.

What are the common symptoms of TB?

There are no symptoms until the infection reaches the lungs. As the bacteria are slow moving, TB develops gradually. When symptoms do begin to appear, you may experience a combination of:

  • Tiredness
  • Fever
  • Loss of weight
  • Coughing
  • Night sweats

Can my baby contract TB?

Babies can get the disease by inhaling the airborne bacteria just like adults.

Babies and children are at high risk for contracting tuberculosis when they:

  • Are born in a country with a high rate of T
  • Have a weakened immune system
  • Live in a household with an adult who has TB
  • Live in communities with inadequate health care
  • As babies cannot tell you how they are feeling, do not take any chances. If your baby may have been in contact with a TB sufferer, come in and see your Peermed doctor as soon as possible.

A worrying trend seen by health practitioners is that many people stop taking their medication.

As hypertension can be present with no obvious symptoms, some patients decide on their own accord to stop taking their medication.

This can be a fatal decision.

If you are prescribed medication never stop taking them and never alter the amount you take. These are decisions that must be made by your General Practitioner

WHAT IS DRUG-RESISTANT TB?

A serious complication of the TB problem in Southern Africa has been the emergence of a multi-drug resistant (MDR) strain. Patients with this strain have to be treated with very expensive medicine, and it only has about 50% success rate.

Reduce the spread of TB

Get tested for TB regularly, especially if you are HIV-positive.
If someone near you coughs or sneezes, turn your head away and cover your mouth.
Open windows in crowded spaces.
If you have TB, take your medicine as prescribed - never deviate.

Ask Us A Question

MEDICAL INFORMATION