Good health habits can stave off “TB”

Always get a good rest, eat the right food and exercise, that in itself can be a great defense against tuberculosis, as we have been always known.

A nurse at the Provincial Health Office and the Provincial Coordinator for the National Tuberculosis Program (NTP) dished out this advice amidst the reality that there are still a good number of undetected cases of microbacterium tuberculosis (TB) in Bohol.

While the PHO noted a high curing rate for people treated with TB, the case detection rate in Bohol is still a low 62 percent, Rances reported at Kapihan sa PIA for Lung Month in August.

The NTP pegs a target of 90 percent TB case detection rate but PHO cited problems with finding these people afflicted with the contagious bacteria.

Communities are supposed to help us seek these people who may have cough for the past three weeks, have unintentionally lost weight, has fevers, chest and back pains, said PHO nurse and NTP Bohol coordinator Polizena Rances.

Once reported, these people vould undergo confirmatory tests through gathering of sputum samples and when found positive, be placed under the free Directly Observed Treatment System for TB (TB DOTS).

Unreported, these people put their family members at high risk of infection, Rances added.

TB bacteria is spread with the air as the TB positive coughs or sneezes and the air is inhaled.

Although most healthy people have antibodies that naturally fight off the infection, those with low immunity tend to contract the disease.

About 95 percent of healthy people with strong resistance can self-cure TB, Rances revealed.

In fact she added that the usual habit of detaining patients in a closed room exacerbates the possibility of infection.

You close the room, you contain the bacteria which can degrade when exposed to sun and thins into insignificant numbers in open air, she explained.

In addition, as soon as the patient has been placed under TB treatment regimen, the possibility of him spreading the bacteria stops.

She however cautions.

A patient ho has started medication has to religiously obey the fixed dose or he could develop a Multi Drug Resistant TB, a much tougher bacteria to beat, PHO said. (PIA)

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