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    Tuberculosis (TB) - Symptoms

    If you have latent tuberculosis (TB), you do not have symptoms and cannot spread the disease to others. If you have active TB, you do have symptoms and can spread the disease to others. Which specific symptoms you have will depend on whether your TB infection is in your lungs (the most common site) or in another part of your body (extrapulmonary TB).

    There are other conditions with symptoms similar to TB, such as pneumonia and lung cancer.

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    If you've received the news that your lung contains something "suspicious," this may be a source of great distress. The first thing that may come to mind is a dreaded word: cancer. In many cases, though, a lung nodule turns out to be benign. This means that it isn'tcancer. A hard part is waiting and not knowing. Here's information that may make your wait just a little bit easier.

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    Symptoms of active TB in the lungs

    Symptoms of active TB in the lungs begin gradually and develop over a period of weeks or months. You may have one or two mild symptoms and not even know that you have the disease.

    Common symptoms include:

    Symptoms of an active TB infection outside the lungs

    Symptoms of TB outside the lungs (extrapulmonary TB) vary widely depending on which area of the body is infected. For example, back pain can be a symptom of TB in the spine, or your neck may get swollen when lymph nodes in the neck are infected.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: June 04, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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