This World Tuberculosis Day, We Are Busting Serious Myths!

March 24, 2023by Yuvraj Patil

We have survived too many pandemics, one such being tuberculosis (TB). There was a time when TB was rising at an exceptional rate. Although tuberculosis is still an alarming condition prevailing among people, more than 40% of the total population in India carry TB-causing bacteria in their bodies. The condition of TB can be fatal for life if not diagnosed and treated on time.

TB is caused due to mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria that not only impacts the lungs, but also the kidneys, brain, bones, and bowels. Some common reasons could be fasting for a longer duration, not sleeping enough, stress, and consuming an undernourished diet. And, surprisingly India has the maximum number of TB patients, resulting in delayed diagnosis and minimal awareness. Well, it is considered the longest-surviving disease in India, which has resulted in the maximum morbidity and mortality rates.

With minimal awareness, there are many things misunderstood and hyped attached to this disease. This World Tuberculosis Day, we have curated some serious myths linked with TB that needs to be busted, in order to understand the rising concern in a better way.

Myth #1: TB affects the lungs only

Fact: TB usually initiates in the lungs, but it can affect the entire parts of the body slowly, such as the brain, kidneys, and spine. The symptoms may vary as it begins affecting other organs. Someone with its origin outside the lungs is termed extra-pulmonary tuberculosis. Therefore, TB needs immediate medical attention as it can spread to other body organs through the bloodstream.

Myth #2: TB is a genetic disorder

Fact: No, tuberculosis is not at all hereditary, and the genes have no role to play here. TB bacteria can affect anyone at any point in time.

Myth #3: Smokers only get TB

Fact: Smoking alone cannot be blamed for TB. There could be other factors as well that may lead to TB, such as HIV, kidney disease, and diabetes.

Myth #4: There is no cure for TB

Fact: Diagnosing the condition in the early stage is the key to tackling TB. An individual with early diagnosis, timely interventions, and medications can lead a TB-free life.

Myth #5: Taking Bacillus Calmette–Guérin (BCG) vaccine can prevent TB

Fact: BCG-vaccinated kids can be protected and prevented from falling sick with severe tuberculosis. Although, it is difficult to say adults are safe as well.

Myth #6: Staying hygienic will not let TB occur

Fact: The occurrence of TB is more interlinked with the immune functioning of an individual. The virus has nothing to do with hygiene.

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Yuvraj Patil

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