2 cases of multi-drug resistant TB confirmed in Northeast Ga.

(WSPA) - Two cases of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis have been confirmed in Northeast Georgia.

According to a news release, the Georgia Department of Public Health's TB Program has been assisting with an investigation into the drug resistant TB in the North Health District, or District 2.

Tuberculosis is a "disease caused by bacteria that are spread from person to person through the air. TB usually affects the lungs, but it can also affect other parts of the body, such as the brain, the kidneys, or the spine," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Sometimes drug-resistant TB occurs when bacteria become resistant to the drugs used to treat TB. This means that the drug can no longer kill the TB bacteria."

The two individuals with confirmed tuberculosis are being treated at this time, and a third possible case is currently being evaluated, according to health officials.

"Individuals, including children, who may have been in contact with the drug resistant TB cases are being screened -- blood testing, chest X-rays.," according to the release.

As a precaution, DPH has notified hospital emergency departments and health care providers that may have seen patients from Hart, Franklin or Stephens counties, or nearby areas.

"This is a proactive, precautionary step to screen individuals with signs and symptoms of TB, especially due to the number of influenza like illnesses that so many people are experiencing."

DPH officials said the following are signs and symptoms that multi-drug resistant TB can include:

  • Prolonged cough
  • Coughing up blood or blood-stained mucus
  • Fever
  • Night sweats
  • Weight loss
  • Malaise

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