AOH :: TUBERCUL.TXT|
New strain of lethal tuberculosis.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE-EMERGENCYNET NEWS
NEW TUBERCULOSIS "EPIDEMIC" SPREADING
By Clark Staten, EMT-Paramedic
Chicago, IL. A new and virulent form of tuberculosis has struck as many
as thirteen (13) states, including Illinois. The states named by the U.S.
Center for Disease Control (CDC) include; New York, New Jersey, Alabama,
California, Texas, Arizona, Georgia, Virginia, Washington, Pennsylvania,
Florida, Hawaii, and Illinois.
This new mutant form of tuberculosis is proving resistant to standard
antibiotic treatments that have been used for years to treat the disease.
According the CDC officials, they requested that representatives of as many
as forty-eight (48) states come to a recent two day meeting to attempt to
develop strategies to combat the new strain of bacteria.
Public health reports have been received that multiple outbreaks of the
deadly new form of the virus have already occurred in at least five states,
with eight others reporting one case of the newly mutated form. Reportedly,
thirty-one (31) other states have also reported higher than normal numbers
of the standard form of tuberculosis. Several health officials have also
expressed concerns that they do not have adequate data on the actual
number of victims of the new strain, in order to determine the true extent of
Tuberculosis, like many other virus-type diseases, is spread by "droplet
dispersion", when the infected patient coughs or sneezes. Contact with the
infected body fluids has been shown to be the primary route of introduction
to the disease. Health care and emergency workers seem to be those at
greatest risk from tuberculosis, due to the fact they are often called upon to
be in close contact with the victims.
The latest lethal strain of the disease also seems to have been most
often reported when associated with those with the Human
Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). Researchers say that it is possible that those
with a compromised immune system may be the most susceptible to this
new form of the disease, and that is why they are being diagnosed at the
onset of this outbreak.
Doctors at the Elmhurst Hospital in Queens, New York, have reported
the latest large outbreak of the disease. Out of thirteen (13) patients
diagnosed with the drug-resistant virus, eleven (11) have died. In the New
York outbreak, however, researchers point out that 85% of the patient that
expired also had tested positive for HIV.
Doctors report that some patients, infected with the drug- resistant
form of tuberculosis, can be cured with early multiple antibiotic intervention.
They say that early diagnosis and treatment seem to be most important
factors in the eventual survival of the infected patients. CDC experts,
however, report that they do not at this time have sufficient data to
determine the overall mortality rate for exposures to drug resistant
Dr. Dixie Snider, CDC's top tuberculosis expert, reportedly issued the
following statement; "At no time in recent history has tuberculosis been of
such concern as it is now. . . because tuberculosis is out of control in this
country". President Bush is expected to acknowledge the growing threat of
this disease by announcing increased funding for tuberculosis prevention and
research programs in the Health & Human Service's 1992-1993 budget.
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