Tobacco use, use of immunosuppressive medications, such as the popular TNF inhibitors, and chronic diseases such as diabetes and HIV infection increase the chances that tuberculosis (TB) infection will progress to TB disease.
TB is an under-recognized risk in the presence of these conditions. Patients and healthcare providers need to be aware of these increased risks. Taking the appropriate TB therapy and knowing the signs and symptoms of TB disease are necessary for health protection.
TB and Other Conditions
- TNF inhibitors one of the most popular medications in the U.S. are recognized to increase TB risks.
- TB is one of the leading causes of death among people living with HIV.
- People with diabetes have a tuberculosis risk 2 to 3 times higher than people without diabetes.
- Smoking may inhibit the effectiveness of life-saving treatment for TB and HIV.
Knowing your TB status is essential if you have a chronic disease, smoke, or take an immunosuppressive medication. A TB blood test (IGRA) can detect tuberculosis infection while it is still easily treatable, and before it takes a further toll on your health. You can be tested by your healthcare provider, or by visiting a county health department.
Early detection and treatment is essential to recovering from tuberculosis and living a better life.