Tuberculosis (TB) is a serious infectious disease of the lungs that is spread through the air from the droplets of an infected person’s cough. The two types of TB are latent and active. Latent is an inactive form of TB in which the person is infected with the bacteria, but does not have symptoms of the disease. Active is the infectious state of TB. This is concerning to health experts, because it can spread to others. Symptoms of TB include a cough that lasts three or more weeks, night sweats, chest pain, chills, and weight loss. People who work in healthcare, prisons, immigration centers or nursing homes have a higher risk of getting the infection.
Treatment may have to be provided to some people for several months, because the bacteria which causes TB is very resistant to many types of antibiotics. The most common antibiotics used are isoniazid, rifampin, ethambutol, and pyrazinamide. Isoniazid may cause liver damage, so routine liver tests may be required by the doctor when starting the drug.