Tuberculosis

4:00pm

Mon June 3, 2013
Shots - Health News

Love In The Time Of TB: A Young Family Fights An Ancient Foe

Originally published on Tue June 4, 2013 8:33 am

Oxana and Pavel Rucsineanu walk to the tuberculosis hospital in Balti, Moldova. Oxana and their new baby live in an apartment, but Pavel still has to stay at the TB ward, fighting for his life.
Jason Beaubien NPR

Oxana and Pavel Rucsineanu fell in love under the drug-induced haze of powerful tuberculosis medications. It was the summer of 2008. They were both in their late 20s, and they should have been in the prime of their lives.

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1:34am

Mon June 3, 2013
Shots - Health News

A Boston Family's Struggle With TB Reveals A Stubborn Foe

Originally published on Tue June 4, 2013 7:10 am

Michelle Williams (center) and two daughters visit the grave of her mother, Judy Williams, at Fairview Cemetery in Hyde Park, Mass., on May 11. Judy died in 2011.
Ellen Webber for NPR

Thanks to gold-standard tuberculosis treatment and prevention programs, cases of TB in the United States have declined every year for the past two decades — to the lowest level ever.

But TB's course through the Williams family in Boston shows that no nation can afford to relax its efforts to find, treat and prevent TB. It's just too sneaky and stubborn an adversary.

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9:31am

Wed May 1, 2013
Shots - Health News

Ratting Out TB: Scientists Train Rodents To Diagnose Disease

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 8:39 am

Abdullah Mchumvu has been training African giant pouched rats for more than a decade in Morogoro, Tanzania.
Jonathan Kalan for NPR

Rats are notorious for spreading nasty diseases. Think the plague, lassa fever and even salmonella.

But could some jumbo-size African rodents help health workers diagnose diseases more quickly? They just might.

A group in Tanzania is training rats to detect tuberculosis in people. The critters in question are African giant pouched rats. They are about twice the size of your average house gerbil — and half as pretty.

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12:04pm

Thu April 25, 2013
Shots - Health News

Why Finding A TB Test Got Hard

The skin test for tuberculosis sparks an itchy welt in people who have been exposed to the bacillus.
Greg Knobloch CDC

Hospitals and public health departments around the country are having a tough time coming up with a staple of preventive health care: the skin test for tuberculosis.

The shortage, caused by problems at a factory in Canada, is prompting suspension of routine TB testing around the country.

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2:29pm

Thu March 21, 2013
Shots - Health News

Tuberculosis Cases In The U.S. Keep Sliding

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 10:02 am

About a third of the world's population is thought to be infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis, but only a small fraction of people get the disease.
NIAID_Flickr

The U.S. is slowly but steadily closing in on tuberculosis.

For the first time since the government started tracking the disease in the 1950s, the number of annual TB cases has dropped below 10,000, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Thursday in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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