Tuberculosis As A Infectious Disease

1339 WordsDec 3, 20156 Pages
Tuberculosis (TB) is a highly infectious disease that can harm any organ of the body, especially the lungs. Every year about over a million people die due to tuberculosis and even more are infected. A person in contact with an infected individual can easily put themselves at risks of getting TB. Due to the emergence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), tuberculosis infections commenced to increment more rapidly. A person with HIV has an impotent immune system which is not able to fight infections such as tuberculosis. There are many ways to diagnose, prevent and treat the further spread of this disease. There are many ways to identify and diagnose the presence and severity of tuberculosis. One of the most prevalent ways to test for TB is…show more content…
Sputum tests may be required for testing if the chest x-ray reveals signs of TB. Tuberculosis can spread by contagious airborne droplets that are passed on easily through close contact with a person who has active or untreated TB. As a person coughs, sneezes, or interacts, it can relinquish infectious droplets into the air. Once a person inhales the infectious droplet (bacillus), it settles in the upper airways. “Bacteria in droplets that bypass the mucociliary system and reach the alveoli are expeditiously circumvented and engulfed by alveolar macrophages, the most abundant immune effector cells present in alveolar spaces” (Knechel, 2009). These macrophages are a component of the immune system that fights to destroy the mycobacteria to obviate infection. “The outcome is essentially determined by the quality of the host bulwarks and the balance that occurs between host bulwarks and the invading mycobacteria” (Knechel, 2009). If the alveolar macrophage fails to overcome the inhaled mycobacteria, the bacteria will replicate until the macrophage lysis. As the monocytes are magnetized to the infection site, it then separates into macrophages and consumes the free bacilli. The mycobacteria then multiply within the macrophages causing it to become infected. The infected macrophages may then be transported to the lymph nodes where it can easily reach the blood stream. After two to three weeks of infection, the helper T cells are
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