Running head: TURBERCULOSIS 1
Tuberculosis: A Public Health Concern
Grand Canyon University
January 9, 2019
Tuberculosis (TB) is the leading cause of death due to infection, making it a major health threat throughout the world. The incidents of TB infection have been on a decline over the past decade (an approximate 1.3% reduction every year), but there is still more work to do to stop the spread. In 2017 there were 9,105 cases reported in the United States, and was present in all 50 states (Sun, 2016). The highest rates of incidence occurred in Texas, New York, California, and Florida, whose total accounted for just under half of the total cases within the United States. The only way TB will be eradicated is if the mode of transportation is stopped, and the cases of latent TB are addressed and of which will require massive investment and resources will be needed. This epidemic must be addressed worldwide due to the spread from immigration and travel outside of the United States. Improving access to health care to diagnose and treat the disease early is key, however limited for those who live in poverty stricken areas. The most concerning recent discovery related to TB are the increasing cases of multidrug-resistant forms of the bacteria. First we will address exactly what TB is and who it affects, then look at health determinants and contributions to the development of TB. The epidemiologic triangle will then explain the concerns of the disease and the spread of the disease. We will then conclude with the responsibility of the nurse in the treatment and prevention of this disease, and resources available through different organizations.
What is Tuberculosis and who does it affect
Tuberculosis (TB) is a contagious bacterial infection of the lungs. Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) bacteria are spread when an infected person releases the bacteria into the air and another individual in the vicinity breathes in the bacteria. The infected person can spread the bacteria by doing things like coughing, speaking, sneezing, etc. Typically TB affects only the lungs; however it can affect other organs like the kidneys, spine, or brain. The bacteria can be latent or active. Those with latent TB do not show any signs of illness from the infection and cannot spread the infection to others around them. Both active and latent TB requires treatment to prevent the progression of the disease which could lead to death. The most common signs and symptoms of active TB include a persistent cough that last more than 3 weeks, green or yellow phlegm that can be blood-tinged, fever, night sweats, fatigue, loss of appetite, weight loss, chest pain, or shortness of breath.
TB is the leading cause of death due to infection, making it a major health threat throughout the world. The incidents of TB infection have been on a decline over the past decade (an approximate 1.3% reduction every year), but there is still m...