What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Active Tuberculosis?
Normally, the primary stage of tuberculosis does not have any visible symptoms.
When symptoms do occur, it normally includes the following signs:
- Difficulty in breathing
- Cough with mucus
- Chest pains
- Sweating at night
- Coughing up blood
- Mildly severe weight loss
- Wheezing when breathing
- Fever and fatigue
If you have been coughing for more than three weeks and there is blood that comes with the coughing, this is a sign and symptom of pulmonary tuberculosis.
The reason that there is blood when you cough is because the blood vessels inside your lungs have eroded and have begun bleeding. This also means that the bacterium has started to multiply inside the body and is systematically destroying tissue. This is why you suffer from loss of energy, appetite, chest pain, sweating at night, and a persistent cough.
If you become infected, make sure that you get treated right away. You need to complete the prescribed medicine and drink it exactly as prescribed. If you stop taking the drugs before you are supposed to, you could become sick again. If you do not take the drugs properly, the tuberculosis bacteria can stay alive in your body and may become resistant to the medicine. A form of tuberculosis that is resistant to medicine becomes more difficult to treat.
Who is at Risk?
Tuberculosis can affect anyone. However, there are certain groups of people who may be at risk more than others such as the young and the elderly. These clusters of people need to be on the lookout for the signs and symptoms of pulmonary tuberculosis to protect themselves from infection.
People from countries where pulmonary tuberculosis is still considered common are at a higher risk of getting sick with tuberculosis. Industrialized nations have taken great strides in eliminating tuberculosis, but the disease persists in parts of the world such as the Carribean, Asia, Russia, Africa, Eastern Europe and most countries in Latin America.
Frontliners who work at places such as nursing homes, long-term care facilities, or homeless shelters are also at a higher risk of exposure.
Though it is still important to be on the lookout for the signs and symptoms of pulmonary tuberculosis, it is no longer considered a death sentence should you test positive for this illness. Tuberculosis is now a curable disease as long as you complete taking your medicines and follow your doctor’s orders.