Signs & Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis

  • Print this article
Signs & Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis thumbnail
Tuberculosis can be latent or active.

Pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) is an infection caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria. TB can be latent or active. With latent TB, the infection lies dormant in the body, is not contagious and the patient usually shows no symptoms. With active TB, the patient is contagious and may show symptoms. TB is treatable but is still considered a potentially serious disease and, by the Mayo Clinic's estimation, kills almost two million people each year. Rates of TB have increased since the 1980s, with HIV/AIDS and the emergence of drug-resistant strains.

  1. Lung Signs and Symptoms

    • TB primarily affects the lungs as the body forms growths, or tubercles, around the bacteria within the lung tissue. These tubercles damage the lung tissue, causing severe coughing, bloody sputum and chest pain. The coughing can last for three weeks or more, and the chest pain generally occurs with breathing or coughing.

    Systemic Signs and Symptoms

    • Because TB is a bacterial infection, the body will try to create a hostile environment to kill the bacteria. Fever is one of the body's first defenses against invading pathogens and is a common symptom of an active TB infection. Patients may also experience night sweats, chills and fatigue in association with the fever. The fever and lung symptoms can also cause a loss of appetite. If the loss of appetite continues, it can lead to weight loss.

    Unusual Signs and Symptoms

    • While TB is often thought of as a lung disease, it can affect other structures. If the bacteria spread to other areas of the body, patients may experience a variety of symptoms, depending on the structures affected. If the bacteria spread to the kidneys, patients may experience lower back pain and blood in the urine. If present in the spine, the bacteria may cause pain along the spine and headaches.

    Tuberculosis versus Other Illnesses

    • The signs and symptoms of TB can mimic other respiratory illnesses like the flu and bronchitis. It is possible for patients to have symptoms so mild that they ignore them or confuse those symptoms for something else. It is possible to have active TB and have no symptoms at all. People at risk for TB--such as healthcare workers and those with HIV/AIDS---and those who suspect they may have TB should consult a physician or pulmonary specialist.

Related Searches

References

  • Photo Credit Frau hustet image by R.-Andreas Klein from Fotolia.com

You May Also Like

  • The Signs & Symptoms of Tuberculosis

    According to the Mayo Clinic, tuberculosis is an immune system disorder that causes a person to become very ill with several symptoms...

  • TB Signs & Symptoms

    Tuberculosis (TB) is a bacterial infection of the lungs caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It is a chronic, contagious disease that is spread...

  • Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis

    Pulmonary tuberculosis is a bacterial infection that affects mainly the lungs but does sometimes spread to other organs. Tuberculosis is contagious and...

  • Symptoms of Tuberculosis in Lungs

    Signs & Symptoms of Miliary Tuberculosis. Miliary, or disseminated, tuberculosis ... Signs & Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis. The Lifespan of Tuberculosis Droplets.

  • How to Determine Signs of Tuberculosis

    Tuberculosis (TB) is an infection most commonly found in the lungs but can also develop in the bones or gastrointestinal track. TB...

  • Pulmonary Tuberculosis Diagnosis

    Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis. Pulmonary tuberculosis is a bacterial infection that affects mainly the lungs but does sometimes spread to other organs.

  • TB Symptoms

    Specific symptoms of pulmonary TB include a productive cough that persists longer than three weeks, bloody sputum and chest pain. General Symptoms.

  • Tuberculosis Symptoms

    Signs & Symptoms of Tuberculosis in Children. ... Removal of a Lung Due to Tuberculosis. Tuberculosis (TB) is one of the world's...

  • Signs of Tuberculosis

    Signs of Tuberculosis. Tuberculosis is a disease that commonly targets the lungs. ... Signs & Symptoms of TB Disease. TB, or tuberculosis,...

  • Signs and Symptoms of Tuberculosis in Adults

    Tuberculosis (TB) kills an estimated two million people each year, according to the Mayo Clinic. The active disease affects the lungs and...

  • What Is Ptb Pulmonary Tuberculosis?

    Signs & Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis; What Are the Treatments for Pulmonary Tuberculosis? Print this article; Causes. PTB is caused by Mycobacterium...

  • Signs & Symptoms of Miliary Tuberculosis

    Miliary, or disseminated, tuberculosis (TB) occurs when the Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria spread outside the lungs to other parts of the body through...

  • What Are the Treatments for Pulmonary Tuberculosis?

    Signs & Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis. Signs & Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis. Pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) is an infection caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis...

  • Mycobacterium Tuberculosis Symptoms

    Signs & Symptoms of Tuberculosis in Children. ... Signs & Symptoms of Pulmonary Emphysema. Shortness of breath is frequently one of the...

  • Definition of Pulmonary Tuberculosis

    Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis; ... Pulmonary Tuberculosis (PTB) is a lung infection that can be very serious, and is still a very...

  • Signs & Symptoms of Tuberculosis in Children

    Tuberculosis, often referred to as TB, is a bacterial infection caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Tuberculosis can be fatal if not treated properly....

  • Pulmonary Tuberculosis Complications

    Symptoms of Pulmonary Tuberculosis. Pulmonary tuberculosis is a bacterial infection that affects mainly the lungs but does sometimes spread to other organs.

  • Signs & Symptoms of TB Disease

    When TB attacks your lungs, you'll notice additional symptoms. The Mayo Clinic warns that you may begin coughing up blood. ... TB...

  • How to Recognize the Symptoms of Tuberculosis

    How to Recognize the Symptoms of Tuberculosis. Tuberculosis is spread through the air like the common cold, ... Symptoms of Tuberculosis in...

  • Signs & Symptoms of Kidney Problems in Men

    When there are problems with a person's kidneys, there are certain signs and symptoms that will present themselves. With men, these symptoms...

Related Ads

Featured
View Mobile Site