Tuberculosis (TB) is caused by bacteria (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) that most often affect the lungs. Tuberculosis is curable and preventable. TB is spread from person to person through the air. When people with lung TB cough, sneeze or spit, they propel the TB germs into the air. A person needs to inhale only a few of these germs to become infected.
Signs and Symptoms
Cough, Unintentional weight loss, Fatigue, Fever, Night sweats, Chills, Loss of appetite
World Health Organization (WHO) estimates in 2012 revealed that up to 74 000 children die from TB each year and children account for around half a million new cases annually.
Tuberculosis (T.B) is responsible for major burden on health and economics low income counties in which Pakistan is also included. Pakistan ranks sixth in the world having 1.5 million TB patients, with 250,000 new cases every year. Internationally the disease is responsible for 26 per cent avoidable deaths. The incidence rate of TB is 181/100000 and out of which 50% are AFB positive cases1. The exact figures of childhood TB in Pakistan is unknown.
Vaccination and Prevention
Infants in Pakistan are vaccinated with bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine because it can prevent severe tuberculosis in children.BCG vaccine prevents tuberculosis or TB, and it has been used since 1921 globally. While it does not provide 100% protection against TB, it significantly decreases the chances of your baby getting this serious disease.
A single dose of BCG vaccine is administered routinely at birth in Pakistan. The vaccine is administered just beneath the skin. If the child misses the dose at birth, it can be administered later on as well.