Lifestyle & Parenting Blog
As a child I remember a campaign the local Day Hospital ran in our community to ensure tuberculosis (TB) patients took their medication religiously. We had a few people come to our house in the early morning hours or after work to take their medication. Clinic Sisters did house-calls to follow up on their patients.
I remember admiring my dad for opening up our house to these patients. Sometimes he would even go as far as visiting patients at their homes and I recall many other community members in Ocean View doing the same thing. Fighting TB was everyone’s business!
In South Africa we lose approximately 50 000 people per annum to TB, and those diagnosed with Multi Drug Resistant (MDR) and Extensively Drug Resistant (XDR) TB are at a severe risk of developing permanent hearing loss due to the ototoxicity* in the aminoglycoside drugs in TB treatment.
Today, my dad and I were privileged to listen to two guest speakers share their journey of surviving MDR and XDR TB at the AHLAD brunch.
TB is caused by bacteria (mycobacterium tuberculosis) that most often affect the lungs. TB is curable and preventable. It is an airborne disease – when people with TB cough, sneeze or spit, they propel TB germs into the air.
TB is a community disease, it is everyone’s business, anyone can become infected with TB. A person infected with TB can transmit the disease to 10 -15 others.
* Ototoxic: to have a toxic effect on the ear or its nerve supply.