Dr Charles Nwafor, the Medical Adviser, German Leprosy and Tuberculosis Relief Association (GLRA) in Enugu, says 99 per cent of tuberculosis (TB) cases come through inhaling bacteria-infected air. Nwafor, a public health expert, said this while speaking with the Press, on the theme of this year’s World Tuberculosis Dayon Monday in Enugu.
“Ninety-nine per cent of TB cases come through the inhaling of the air already contaminated with TB germs into the lungs. “Eighty per cent of the cases occur in the lungs while the remaining 20 per cent affects other parts of the body,” Nwafor said.
He said the remaining one per cent infection was from drinking unpasteurised cow milk, eating raw meat or poorly-cooked beef which was infected with the germ.
The public health expert listed the preventive measures to include avoiding overcrowded hall or rooms, adequate ventilation and good nutrition.
He said early detection and proper case management were the key strategies for its prevention and control.
“I urge people to improve on their nutrition and avoid risky situations like being infected with the Human Immune Virus (HIV), because it is the commonest risk factor for the development of active tuberculosis,’’ the medical adviser said.
In his contribution, another public health doctor, Dr Daniel Oshi, said the association was assisting in supporting the national programme in the fight against leprosy, TB, Buruli Ulcer and HIV.
He said tuberculosis was caused by a germ called micro-bacterium tuberculosis being spread via air droplet.
“When somebody who has tuberculosis sneezes, coughs or shouts, he or she will be releasing contaminated air with the germ.
“When this occurs, another person beside him or her will inhale the disease, thereby contracting the disease,” Oshi said.
Also contributing, another public health practitioner, Dr Nelson Madichie, said the association had partnered with both public and private hospitals in various states.
“We have through the TB programmes donated drugs to various hospitals in states and local government areas.