SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 24, 2016

Illinois Department of Public Health furthers tuberculosis investigation

Illinois Department of Public Health furthers tuberculosis investigation | Courtesy of cdc.gov

According to a recent announcement, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has chosen to further its investigation of potential exposure to extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR TB).

In collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as various local health departments throughout northern Illinois, the IDPH is seeking to identify people who may have had exposure to a patient recently diagnosed with XDR TB.

The patient diagnosed with XDR TB has been admitted to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Center, which is located in Maryland. In April, the patient traveled from India to the U.S. via Chicago O’Hare airport.

XDR TB is rare and resistant to at least one second-line drug, as well as first line drug treatments. TB and XDR TB are both spread when bacteria is airborne. Any individual breathing air with TB bacteria can contract a TB infection.

“We continue to work with our local, state and federal public health partners to conduct contract tracing to identify individuals who may have had contact with this patient and determine if they should be tested for TB infection,” Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Nirav D. Shah, J.D., said. “Anyone who has recently been in close contact with someone who is sick and exhibiting signs of TB should contact their doctor or local health department.”

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