Kollam: The health department has initiated preventive measures to check tuberculosis infection among people who have recovered from COVID-19. The preventive measures have been taken after a study report revealed that people face a high risk of tuberculosis as post-COVID health issue. Within 4 weeks, 10 tuberculosis cases were reported in Kerala.
It is examined that COVID infection weakens the immune system of the patients. Hence, the weak immune system, variation in lung function and response of medicines administrated to patients in critical condition trigger the risk of tuberculosis, finds a study.
At the same time, patients who have an imbalanced sugar level are also at high risk of tuberculosis after recovering from COVID. The delay in diagnosing the symptoms of the respiratory illness turn patients into critical condition.
Though tuberculosis is reported among many COVID patients, most of them recover from it with natural immunity.
According to doctors, COVID patients who suffer from pneumonia are likely to develop tuberculosis.
As part of the preventive measures, the health department has started special screening to identify tuberculosis patients at post-COVID care centres. People with symptoms will be taken for expert medical care. Guidelines for treatment are being given via telephone.
“Those who have symptoms like coughing with mucus, weight loss and fever must undergo test to determine tuberculosis. Those who are suffering from the disease will face discomfort while taking X-ray,” said Dr Arun Jude Alphone, pulmonologist, social health centre, Enandimangalam in Pathanamthitta.