Symptoms Diagnosis And Treatment Of Spinal Tuberculosis

Symptoms Diagnosis And Treatment Of Spinal Tuberculosis

India accounts for approximately 20 per cent of the worlds tuberculosis patients. Ten per cent of six million who suffer from this disease have bony infections and the spine is the most common bone affected. Spinal tuberculosis like any other form of TB is more common up to 30 years of age, though babies as small as one year of age and elderly people of eighty to eighty five years of age have also been reported to have tuberculosis of the spine.

If you are dealing with back pain that gets worse in the night and even after taking bed rest you don’t get relief, this can be a reason to worry as it could be symptoms of spinal tuberculosis. And if not diagnosed early or intervened at an early stage, this could cause partial or complete paralysis.

Diagnosis And Treatment

For diagnosing spinal tuberculosis, one needs to undergo a clinical examination which includes tests for muscle power of the legs, a test for sensations of the limbs, presence of muscle stiffness and an analysis of gait. Also, a blood examination and radiological investigations may be required that includes x-rays, ultrasound, CT scan and MRI. Apart from the medications, a protein rich diet and proper rest is necessary to treat spinal tuberculosis. Normally, patients require more than one year of treatment and in the majority of cases, the disease is completely cured if the patient takes regular medications.

In the majority of cases, spine TB is usually not contagious and within seven to 10 days of starting the anti TB drugs, the patient becomes non-contagious. Spine TB is a curable condition and all complications can be prevented, provided the disease is diagnosed at an early stage and the patient takes a regular supervised course of medications. If required, surgical intervention is necessary to prevent or treat the complications at the earliest stage.

Symptoms of Spinal TB

In the majority of cases, spinal TB has a slow onset. The initial symptoms are common to all types of tuberculosis: tiredness, lack of interest in work, loss of weight and appetite, night sweats and shooting up of temperature in the evening. Some major symptoms of spinal TB includes:

  • Stiffness of the back
  • Constant pain over the infected bone which gets worse at night
  • Feeling of weaknesses in the legs and arms
  • Twitching of the leg or arm muscle and loss of sensation
  • Respiratory problems in case of TB in the neck bone
  • Pus discharge from skin caused by bursting of pus containing sac. in patients who have not taken proper treatment.

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