Tuberculosis – Nigeria

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In the Anambra state of Nigeria, 1 in 13 residents has been infected with tuberculosis.

Symptoms include persistent coughs, sometimes spanning two or more weeks. Each untreated case can infect 10 to 15 people, which stems from the illness’s air-borne nature.

Identified cases are being sent to hospitals for treatment.

The government and health officials say raising awareness on TB is crucial right now to identify more cases and control the spread.

Photo: Mycobacterium tuberculosis electron micrograph.

About one quarter of the world’s population has a tuberculosis infection, which means people have been infected but are not (yet) ill with the disease and cannot transmit it.

When a person develops active tuberculosis, the symptoms (such as cough, fever, night sweats, or weight loss) may be mild for many months. This can lead to delays in seeking care, and results in transmission of the bacteria to others. People with active tuberculosis can infect 5 to 15 other people through close contact over the course of a year.

The largest numbers of new tuberculosis cases occurred in South-East Asia, followed by Africa and the Western Pacific. In 2019, eight countries accounted for two thirds of the new tuberculosis cases: India, Indonesia, China, Philippines, Pakistan, Nigeria, Bangladesh and South Africa.

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