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How is tuberculosis treated?

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Doctors prescribe antibiotics to kill the bacteria that cause it. You’ll need to take them for several months. Which medication you take and how long you’ll have to take it depends on whether you have active or latent tuberculosis (TB, for short) and on how well the drugs work.

It’s important to take every dose. Don’t stop, even if you feel better. If you don’t kill all of the bacteria in your body, the remaining germs can adapt and become drug-resistant. When you have drug-resistant TB, you need to take stronger medications for longer.

With the proper treatment, tuberculosis is almost always curable.

SOURCES:

Brian W. Christman, MD, Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

CDC: “Questions and Answers About Tuberculosis” and “Tuberculosis.”

American Lung Association: “Learn About Tuberculosis.”

Mayo Clinic: “Tuberculosis.”

World Health Organization: “Tuberculosis.”

Minnesota Department of Health: “Home Respiratory Precautions for Patients with Potentially Infectious Tuberculosis.”

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on September 18, 2019

SOURCES:

Brian W. Christman, MD, Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

CDC: “Questions and Answers About Tuberculosis” and “Tuberculosis.”

American Lung Association: “Learn About Tuberculosis.”

Mayo Clinic: “Tuberculosis.”

World Health Organization: “Tuberculosis.”

Minnesota Department of Health: “Home Respiratory Precautions for Patients with Potentially Infectious Tuberculosis.”

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on September 18, 2019

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What are the two types of tuberculosis?

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