Tuberculosis transmission and control
- Kimon C Zachary, MD
Kimon C Zachary, MD
- Assistant Professor of Medicine
- Harvard Medical School
The transmission of tuberculosis (TB) in healthcare facilities is an important public health concern; careful infection control measures are required to reduce healthcare-associated transmission [1,2].
Issues related to control of TB transmission will be reviewed here. Other issues related to TB are discussed in detail separately. (See related topics.)
Person-to-person transmission of tuberculosis (TB) occurs via inhalation of droplet nuclei (airborne particles 1 to 5 microns in diameter). Coughing and singing facilitate formation of droplet nuclei [3-7]. (See "Natural history, microbiology, and pathogenesis of tuberculosis".)
Factors associated with risk for TB transmission via droplet nuclei include:
●Presence of active untreated pulmonary or laryngeal TB
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- TB TRANSMISSION
- COMPONENTS OF TB INFECTION CONTROL
- Airborne infection isolation
- Use of masks
- - Healthcare workers
- - Patients
- - Visitors
- Contact investigation
- Assessing compliance
- CLINICAL APPROACH
- Assessing risk for TB
- Diagnostic evaluation
- Clinical triaging
- - Outpatient management
- - Inpatient management
- Initiating airborne precautions
- Discontinuing airborne precautions
- Discharge planning
- INFORMATION FOR PATIENTS