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General Information / Disease

What is the projected future scenario of tuberculosis in our country?

Demographic changes like increasing life expectancy, population growth, deterioration of living conditions in urban areas like over-crowding and epidemiological factors like HIV epidemic are expected to increase the incidence of TB, unless TB control efforts are intensified on a war footing. Poor treatment practices if continued may contribute to epidemic of multi-drug resistant TB (MDRTB) making the disease virtually incurable. Fortunately, the ‘DOTS strategy’ now being expanded in the country has shown promise in terms of cure of infectious cases and hopes have been aroused of its control provided the strategy is implemented with full vigour.

Why is priority given to detection and cure of sputum smear positive cases?

Sputum smear positive cases of pulmonary TB are the main sources of transmission of infection. They are responsible for almost 95% of the transmission of infection in the community. They also suffer from more extensive disease and thus are at higher risk of dying. If not treated properly they become the sources of drug resistant bacilli.