Tuberculosis is an extremely dangerous disease that had previously been considered incurable and kills millions of people. At the present time due to the introduction of compulsory vaccination and the presence of a number of effective anti-TB chemotherapy people are able to control this disease. However, even now in Russia die from complications of tuberculosis more than 20,000 people a year. That is why it is important to follow all doctors’ recommendations regarding the prevention of tuberculosis in childhood and in adulthood.
Prevention of tuberculosis in children
Prevention of TB in children is aimed at preventing infection and prevention of disease. The main methods of prevention of tuberculosis in children – BCG vaccination and chemoprophylaxis.
In accordance with the National immunization calendar vaccination is carried out in the hospital unless contraindicated in the first 3-7 days of life. The BCG vaccine is an attenuated strain of mycobacteria, which are sufficiently immunogenic, but in healthy children do not cause infection. To vaccination, there are absolute and relative contraindications. Prior to BCG sure to discuss this issue with the pediatrician.
The BCG vaccine injected intradermally, ensuring the development of the local tubercular process, benign for general health. As a result, the body produces specific immunity against Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Immunizations help reduce infection and disease of children, prevent the development of acute and generalized forms of tuberculosis. This means that the vaccinated child with a good post-vaccination immunity at a meeting with the mycobacteria are infected or not at all, or will take a mild infection. In theory, parents are entitled to refuse to perform BCG vaccination to their child. However, taking such a decision, it must be remembered that tuberculosis is not insured by anybody, especially a child. By the age characteristics of children are far more susceptible to tuberculosis during primary infection than adults.
That is why, for the control of tuberculosis immunity and to identify the moment of initial infection to children annually a Mantoux test. Adults Mantoux test is carried out only when indicated. Mantoux test is based on the intradermal administration of small doses of tuberculin and subsequent evaluation of the allergic reactions that occurred in the skin at the injection site. Tuberculin is a product of the activity of mycobacteria. It should be emphasized that the Mantoux test is harmless. Tuberculin does not contain live micro-organisms used in the dosage does not affect the body’s immune system or the whole body. After injection of the drug in the skin occurs specific inflammation caused by infiltration of the skin T-lymphocytes – specific blood cells responsible for cell-mediated immunity. If the body at the time of setting the sample already “acquainted” with the Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the inflammation at the injection site will be more intense, and Mantoux test will be evaluated by a physician as a positive. However, it should be understood that such a positive reaction may be a manifestation of both Infectious Allergy and postvaccinal. After BCG vaccination within the next 5-7 years in normal Mantoux test may be positive, reflecting the presence of a good post-vaccination immunity. With increasing time after inoculation there is a decrease of sensitivity to tuberculin up to its extinction. There are strict criteria on which the doctor can distinguish between primary infection of postvaccinal allergy. If you suspect an infection with Mycobacterium child sent to a TB dispensary, where they spend the additional examination and confirmation of infection in the case of prescribed preventive treatment. The fact that infection with mycobacteria is not in all cases means illness. Virtually everyone is infected by Mycobacterium adulthood and has immunity to it, but only a few were ill with tuberculosis. A good immune system can limit infection and prevent progression of the disease. In contrast, in a weakened body, serious illness, immunodeficiency when infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis develop. Primary infection in childhood may be more likely to lead to tuberculosis. In order to help their body fight the infection and prevent development of disease> when an initial infection, the child is prescribed a course of preventive treatment with one or two chemotherapy. After 1 year with no signs of TB child is removed from the register phthisiatrician.
Immunity acquired after vaccination with BCG, there remains an average of 5 years. To maintain the acquired immune re-vaccination (boosters) are currently under way at 7 and 14 years.
Prevention of Tuberculosis in Adults
It is believed that TB disease of people of low income. However, it is important to know that, due to the unfavorable epidemiological situation in our country and the world, the disease can meet anyone, regardless of its level of affluence. Risk factors for tuberculosis include: a recent infection, diabetes, therapy with immunosuppressive drugs, HIV infection, drug abuse, alcohol, tobacco, poor diet, crowded population and repeated contact with those suffering people. According to statistics, currently there is increasing incidence of tuberculosis among segments of society. More susceptible to tuberculosis elderly.
Prevention of tuberculosis in adults is the annual outpatient observation and detection of the disease at an early stage. In order to detect tuberculosis in the early stages of an adult should take x-ray examination at the clinic at least 1 time per year (depending on profession, health status and belonging to different risk groups).
Unfortunately, most of the symptoms of tuberculosis are nonspecific. TB can be suspected for the presence of the following symptoms:
– Cough or cough with sputum, possibly with blood;
– Fatigue and the appearance of weakness;
– Lack or loss of appetite, weight loss;
– Excessive sweating, especially at night;
– A slight increase in temperature to 37-37,5 degrees.
When you save at least one of the above symptoms within three weeks of an urgent need to address the physician. In the case of suspected TB patients is recommended for making fluorography, chest x-ray and sputum to be tested. In all suspicious cases are referred to the TB clinic for further diagnosis and treatment.