Published on: September 2, 2021


TB/SARS COV-2 CO-INFECTION What is in news : Karnataka is the first State in the country to start a door-to-door survey to detect TB among COVID-19-recovered individuals and their household contacts

Rāiwind Why this move : Based, on the results, state government will issue an advisory asking people to mandatorily get screened for TB if they have symptoms

Details :

TB co-infection increases the risk of severe COVID-19 disease, and TB/SARS CoV-2 co-infection is associated with rapid and severe symptom development and disease progression with poor outcomes for both diseases


  • Caused by bacteria called Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
  • Usually attack the lungs, but they can also damage other parts of the body.
  • Spreads through the air when a person with TB of the lungs or throat coughs, sneezes, or talks.
  • Easily diagnosable and curable.
  • Each day, thousands of people with TB die, often because of inequitable access to quality diagnosis and treatment.
  • Infection, Progression, Transmission of TB
    • Infection: Infection occurs when TB bacilli are inhaled. Bacilli may stay in the lungs or travel to other organs. Infection is lifelong, with bacilli lying dormant. This phase is “latent TB”, diagnosed by a tuberculin skin test (TST). The “annual rate of TB infection” (ARTI) is about 1%. Cumulatively, 40% to 70% of us are living with latent TB. From this reservoir pool, a few progress to TB disease, one by one, 5-30 years, average 20 years, later.
    • Progression: Progression occurs when bacilli become active, multiply and cause pathology; now we have “active TB”.
    • Transmission: When active TB affects the lungs, the bacilli find an exit route to the atmosphere, necessary for transmission.
  • Symptoms of TB in the lungs may include
    • A bad cough that lasts 3 weeks or longer
    • Weight loss
    • Loss of appetite
    • Coughing up blood or mucus
    • Weakness or fatigue
    • Fever
    • Night sweats
  • CURE :
    • Drug treatment
    • For patients with Latent TB infections, – isoniazid
    • Active TB Diseases – Combination of ethambutol, INH, priftin and pyrazinamide for a term of three months followed by a mix of INH and pyrazinamide for 12 months.
  • In India:
    • Accounts for a fifth of the world’s TB burden
    • Largest number of people living with multidrug-resistant TB.