John D. Chovan, James R. Cacchillo
Latent Tuberculosis Infection, Infectious Disease
Immune System Diseases | Medical Pathology | Nursing | Public Health and Community Nursing | Respiratory Tract Diseases
Tuberculosis (TB) is a major health concern not only in the United States, but in the entire world. TB is an airborne communicable infection which has affected human beings from immemorial times, evidenced by TB being found in the skeletal remains of ancient mummies (Gough & Kaufman, 2011). There are many patho physiological events in TB that concern the entire body, especially the respiratory and immunological systems. According to Knechel, TB prevalence is rising due to the increased number of patients infected with HIV, bacterial resistance to medications, increased international travel and immigration from countries with high prevalence of TB, and the growing numbers of the homeless and drug abusers. The immune system declines with age. Therefore, the elderly are more susceptible to TB disease, (2009). Latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) is a type of TB where some producing disease bacilli evade the immune system response, which causes their survival and persistence in a non-replicating state in the host. The importance of LTBI is that people who have this disease are not contagious, but they are at risk of developing an active infection which is symptomatic and contagious. About 90 % of people who become infected with TB develop a LTBI (Shi, Shi, & Xu, 2011).
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