Anonymous asked in HealthDiseases & ConditionsRespiratory Diseases · 1 decade ago

TB question...very worried!?

I was exposed to a patient who has tb. I feel something around my nasal cavity, pharynx or somewhere further back. It was a closed room, and I'm not so sure how tb spreads. Can it spread through out the room if the patient had a breathing mask but not through out the entire time? But when I walked in he did. I had a mask but it wasn't tight around my face. I'm really concerned because I don't live alone. I don't want to panic if it isn't such a big deal. I feel that I am being paranoid but then again you never know. Since I don't know much about tb it really does concern me. How soon can you get it, and how soon can you feel the symptoms?

7 Answers

  • Kelsey
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    TB takes an incredibly long time to manifest. You would not be having symptoms yet. The chance that you will even get it is slim. TB is spead by droplets. When a person with active TB coughs, they send out tiny little droplets containing the bacteria on them. When you inhale the droplets, that's when you get TB. It actually takes a lot of these little droplets to transmit TB from one person to another, like someone coughing directly in your face with no barriers between the two of you, or repeated contact with someone who has TB. Was it an active TB case? If not, then you have absolutely nothing to worry about. if a TB infection is not active (latent) then it's not communicable. You may have been exposed to the bacteria, but that doesn't mean that you will actually get the disease. If the amount of bacteria is small, your immune system does a really great job of fighting it off. It will settle in one little spot in your lung and your body will make a sort of wall around it so that it can't spread. Be advised, that if this is the case, you may eventually get an active infection if your immune system becomes impared (like if you get HIV or are being treated for cancer with chemo or need a transplant and have to take anti-rejection drugs). You really shouldn't worry too much about this. It's unlikley that you contracted it. You should, however get tested. If you somehow did contract it, you can be started on a 3 to 6 month course of drugs that can stop the infection. I suggest waiting a week or two before getting the test done. It will take at least that long for the antibodies to form. You need antibodies for TB in order for it to show up positive. If you go any earlier, you risk getting a false negative.

    Source(s): nursing student
  • ?
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    I assume you havent been vaccinated against TB. You can tell by seeing if you have a BCG scar on one of your upper arms. Vaccination was introduced in the UK in the late 60s i think.

    Pulmonary TB is transmitted via air. It's possible, but unlikely you would have contracted TB from the patient. Especially if you and the patient were wearing masks. The more time you spend with a person with TB the more likely you are to get it.

    It is a very slow growing bacterium and it can take weeks for you to start showing the common respiratory TB symptoms of chronic painful cough, coughing up blood, weight loss and night sweats.

    The treatment is aggressive antibiotics, and those you live with will also get antibiotics prophylactically so dont worry too much about that.

    If you're unsure whether you've had the vaccination you can have the tuberculin skin test, I suggest you discuss this with the doctor if you remain worried.

  • 1 decade ago

    Well you can get tested because you have been exposed.

    However that something you feel around your nasal cavity, pharynx or somewhere further back is not TB. It takes long for the mycobacteria to replicate and if your immune system is strong, it will be suppressed. It won't show up this early.

  • you need to relax. it's just allergies. if you're a relatively healthy person, the chances of getting tb infection and developing tb disease are very low. if it's really worrying you, then i suggest you get a tb test in about 2 months just for peace of mind. good luck, buddy.

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  • 1 decade ago

    see a doctor immediately if ur coughing up stuff

  • 1 decade ago

    go to the doctor and have checked

  • Dr. L
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago
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