14 year old infected with TBC

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14-year-old infected with TBC: students are tested for tuberculosis

After the TBC disease of a 14-year-old girl became known in Prenzlau (Uckermark), six further cases of infection were discovered. The authorities now want to test blood samples from hundreds of classmates. Blood sampling should start on Monday.

Six more cases discovered In Prenzlau (Uckermark) in Brandenburg, it was announced in June that a 14-year-old student had contracted open pulmonary tuberculosis (TBC). The case of the highly contagious disease had been reported to the authorities. As a result, tests were carried out under 200 close contacts of the teenage girl and a further six, but not contagious infections were found at different stages. Six students are affected, all of whom are being treated.

Further blood tests planned In addition to the students, family members, friends, sports comrades and the teachers were also examined. The district administration announced on Friday that the district would now test further blood samples from 400 classmates. Blood sampling at the city's gymnasium is scheduled to start on Monday, with findings available a week later. The district medical officer said that the 14-year-old is well after a treatment in a special clinic. However, she still had to take medication.

Number of new infections fluctuating According to the Ministry of Health, the number of new TBC infections in the country is fluctuating and reached the highest level in 2010 with 101 cases. 65 infections were reported this year. In Berlin there has been a 25 percent increase to 310 cases in 2012 since 2009.

Underestimated risk Every year, around nine million people worldwide develop tuberculosis and 1.7 million people die each year as a result of the infection. However, it was only recently warned that Germans underestimate the risk of tuberculosis. For example, the president of the German Central Committee to Combat Tuberculosis, Tobias Welte, said: "There must be more attention in the health system for tuberculosis." TBC can be transmitted when coughing, sneezing or speaking loudly. Prolonged cough with sputum and unwanted weight loss can be signs for the infection. (ad)

Image: Paulwip / pixelio.de

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