According to the Health Protection Agency, tuberculosis, also known as TB, is an infectious disease caused by the bacteria tubercle bacillus. These bacteria can survive in the body for years in a dormant state, which explains why some people can test positive for the infection, but not present with any symptoms of the disease. While tuberculosis ran rampant during the past two centuries, incidences of the disease are much lower today in most industrialized nations. However, in other parts of the world, tuberculosis is still a big problem, and health experts estimate that around one-third of the world's population is infected.
- Unexplained weight loss
- Fever and chills
- Night sweats
- Loss of appetite
If the disease presents in the lungs, additional symptoms might include coughing up blood, coughing that lasts a number of weeks or chest pain with coughing. While this is the most common type of tuberculosis, the disease can also attack the kidneys, brain and spine. When it presents in these organs, the symptoms may be very different, making this a relatively difficult disease to diagnose at times.
This video outlines how tuberculosis begins.
Treatment of Tuberculosis
Another high school in California also confirmed a case of tuberculosis at the end of last year. According to KPBS, a student at Patrick Henry High School was confirmed to have tuberculosis, and testing was provided to students at the school in January.