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stages of Tuberculosis

Hi,Can anyone please comment on the stages of TB .
Like how does Patients body behave during first 1-4 months. Does he get chills,fever and is there frequent vomiting.When does the body come to some stable state.
****Doctors...plz revert..****
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First Helper Jgill

replied December 12th, 2010
Experienced User
Hi Jgill,

I had meant to respond earlier but got just a bit busy. As a "TB Survivor," I know how important your question is to you and others like you. So, here goes:

6 mos before "breaking point" ("breaking point" is the date when I couldn't bear the symptoms anymore and demanded urgent medical attention):

I began experiencing general malaise and very mild flu symptoms, even if it wasn't the typical flu season where I live. I didn't feel like exercising, and I was a regular trail-biker and runner. I even felt discomfort and mildly irritated just being under the sun.

5 mos prior:

I began having afternoon fever (better described as a warm, prickly, and unsettling sensation in the head; not a regular fever) for maybe 30 minutes/episode. I didn't have the night sweating.

On waking up, my voice would be very hoarse; whatever voice I had was "squeaky" and I had to clear my throat hard a number of times before attaining a near-normal voice. It was a big problem to me as my work entailed speaking with people. I think the hoarseness was caused by phlegm creeping up to my vocal chords during sleep.

If I remember correctly it was at this time that my doctor said it was probably just a simple respiratory infection and he prescribed a regular antibiotic for it, which cleared up 90% of the symptoms for about a week.

4-3 mos prior:

Coughing began. It was productive, meaning I could expel phlegm although there were no blood streaks. My malaise and hoarseness of voice continued in the meantime. I continued antibiotics, which always gave temporary relief.

"Breaking Point (6 months after initial symptoms):"

One day, after a coughing episode, I felt a wave of strange weakness come over me, and although I was still maybe "in denial," I became really concerned. All this time, of course, I'd been researching TB on the web, and became convinced that I had it.

I went to my doctor, who sent me to a pulmonary specialist. On my x-ray, they saw a spot and had me undergo a bronchoscopy to make sure. The findings confirmed that I had it.

Almost immediately after confirmation, I began my 6-month treatment. Where I live, the public Health Department handles treatment, and strictly requires that patients take the medication at their clinic every day except weekends. That's so they're sure that the patient is following the regimen, recognizing how serious a threat to general society TB is.

1-6 mos. during Treatment:

To be honest, I felt perhaps only 10-20% better during treatment. This made me doubt if indeed I was being cured. The answer is yes: the medication is extremely potent to kill the bacteria during the 6 or 9 month treatment.

However, the old TB symptoms remain because of damaged lung tissue and the other physiological effects of the disease. During treatment, the medication first kills then sustains our immunity to the bacteria (that's why it's important to take it religiously). But, during treatment and recuperation, the body is still repairing itself. Serious damage is caused by the TB bacteria to whatever organ it infiltrates. That repair time brings with it the same symptoms during disease time. Remember, our symptoms were caused by tissue damage, not the bacteria itself.

6 months after end of Treatment (1 year from diagnosis):

I'm probably 70% back to normal. Maybe I experience the afternoon/evening fever once or twice a week. I still had a little phlegm production, frequently clearing my throat.

I try to overcome the residual feeling of malaise and start my sport and other outdoor activities again. I'm convinced that the fresh air, the sun (Vitamin D source), and physical exercise have been very beneficial. In fact, to this time I always feel better outdoors than indoors.

1 year after end of Treatment:

My feeling is that I'm 90-95% back to normal based on absence of symptoms.

18 months after end of Treatment (2 years from diagnosis):

I'm very close to feeling normal. Very rarely and briefly I have that warm, prickly sensation (almost but not a fever) in the afternoons. I clear my throat maybe 5-6 times a day. I run 6.4 kilometers/week and have my other outdoor activities. I love the feeling of almost complete recovery. Best of all, I know that I've gotten rid of the TB bacteria which I probably had for many, many years but which became active only when my immunity was poor.

My recommendation to you and everyone else is to seek 2nd or 3rd opinions from doctors. It's easy to confuse TB with other diseases. But once a doctor says, "yes, there's a big chance it's TB," jump into the treatment 100%. The post-treatment period will have continuing symptoms as I've described but be assured that your body is in the repair process. Help the body by getting enough sleep, eating nutritiously, and exercising. Just as important, keep a positive attitude. Say to yourself that you have many years ahead, more fulfilling than the years of inactive and active TB.

Hope this helps.
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replied May 22nd, 2011
Your information has been very helpfull. Thank you. My brother is suffering from MDR-TB and my father got infected too. They both have been on medication, my brother has been longer and my father for the last 5 months. My father continues to have the same symtoms, mild fever, phlem and fatigue, we were thinking that maybe the medication is not working but since you mentioned that the symptoms continue due to the tissue damage and that it does not mean that the medication is not working, that was a relief. My brother's case is more severe. He had liver problems due to drug side effects and has recuperated but still fighting the tb bacteria's. The doctor says that it is going to be a long treatment since he is resistant to the strong first line anti-tb drugs. I dont know if he will get better or not all we can do is pray.
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replied January 18th, 2012
TB diagonising
I have a doubt...My close relative is having breathing problem...While seeing the result of Chest Xray..its very white almost hiding the ribs..Even a CT scan result reveals the same...

Is it TB or cancer...Doctors not sure...
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replied January 19th, 2012
Experienced User

X-rays and other images are best interpreted by a good doctor, and even then, second opinions are recommended.

My uncle is a Doctor of Radiology in New York, and he explained to me that 1) some images are easy to interpret with confidence, but 2) some images may be inconclusive to the radiologist because, for example, some lines in the x-ray can cross, and the intersection shows as a "tumor" but actually isn't.

The large-area "white" haze or cloud to me, who's not a doctor, can be anything from pneumonia to advanced cancer.

What I can say is that based on current lung problems in my family, the doctors have recommended bronchoscopy and biopsy to ascertain the condition.
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replied July 17th, 2012
hi my father is 55 yrs old.he has chorinc dry cough since last 2 months.we go to my M.d doctor he suggest some blood test and x ray of chest rediologist found enlarge lymphnoads in midiastinal part..then we did CAT scane of thorex.concusion of cat sacne was midiastinal bilatral hilar lymphadenopathy and more chances of lymphoma..then our counsulting oncosurgon has suggest biopsy through thoracoscopy..result came after 1 week it was granulo lymphaditis and more chances of tuberculosis..we have started AKT tratment but my father has loss of apatite laoss of weight so i m worried for hia halth can u help me???
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replied August 16th, 2013
hi everyone my uncle is suffer from lungs tuberculosis since last 7 to 8 months .we go to the m.d doctor in mumbai he treat him about 5-6 month but after complete the course doctor said that he is fine but after 1 month later
he is suffer that way so can u plzzz suggest the doctor in maharastra and uttarpradesh states who can treat him and make him well ....................
the m.d doctor said that the tuberculosis reach in the 3rd stages suggest me plzzzz
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replied July 11th, 2017
I am years late but hopefully my post will save someone's life. My best friend had TB unfortunately she had subcrumbled to the disease she had just turned 28 two weeks before she passed.

Her symptoms started in May 2016 after she experienced a miscarriage at 17 weeks. In the hospital she was suffering from night sweats and fevers. Doctors prescribed her with 7 day antibiotics and she was sent home. Symptoms still was occurring on and off.

October 2016 she developed a dry cough that wouldn't go away. She was given 800mg antibiotics.

November 2016 she begun losing weight, feeling weak, having the fever and night sweats, coughing increased, she was vomiting and unable to keep any meals down.

January 2017 she was admitted to the hospital with suspected TB. She stated she was feeling the same and didn't trust doctors so she left against medical advise.

February 1-20th 2017 all her symptoms got worse and she was unable to talk without coughing. She was weak all the time and was unable to stand without holding on to something on leaning on desk. Her skin was completely pale. She developed lumps on her neck and stomach.

February 20th 2017 she walked into another hospital weak and was unable to hold her bowels (organs were shutting down at this point) x-ray and test confirmed she had TB. X-ray showed her lungs were completely white and infection has spread through her body and organs as well as her brain. She was very weak but still alert.

February 23-25th 2017 weak and alert but begun hallucinating. Very disoriented off and on. Last contact with her alert was 12AM Saturday morning of the 25th of February.

February 26th 2017

4AM: loss of conscience, rapid fast past heaving breathing, organs are steadily shutting down, fluid in body has caused her body to blow up, blood pressure is now dropping, on full blown life support, doctors stated it was nothing else they can do. Body was resisting medication. She can either pull through or just crash.

1:15PM cardiac arrest and she passed.

Mother asked for a autopsy but unfortunately doctors at John Hopkins Hospital could not perform one due to the potential exposure of TB.

I always wondered had she stayed in the hospital back in Jan and never left would she still be here today. She would've had a whole month jump start. I think that she thought it wasn't that big of a deal or that regardless of what it was it can be just easily treated or maybe she just didn't want to fight, maybe she just wanted to die. I also thought how long would she have lived had she not went to the hospital that last time. Like the hospital make it worst? She lasted all this time. How do she go from alert to just down hill in hours.

Regardless of what it was, it's not a day that goes by that I don't think about her and shed a tear. She is truly missed down here. She was more than my best friend she was my sister. RIP Sheek.
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Tags: vomiting, fever, tb
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