(RxWiki News) In 2015, the number of tuberculosis (TB) cases in the United States increased for the first time in 23 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
That finding spurred the CDC to remind the public that TB is both preventable and curable.
The finding came from the CDC's "2015 TB Surveillance Report," which found that TB increased by 1.6 percent from 2014 to 2015 to reported 9,557 cases. Cases had previously been on the decline in almost all US groups since 1993.
But, in 2015, 27 states and Washington, DC, saw an increase in TB cases, according to the CDC.
TB bacteria most often attack the lungs, but they can attack other parts of the body. Not everyone who is infected shows symptoms, which include a bad cough that lasts for 3 weeks or longer, pain in the chest and coughing up mucus or blood from inside the lungs.
If left untreated, TB can be fatal, the CDC noted.
In its report, the CDC called for increased testing and treatment for TB, better treatment strategies and more efforts to reach populations affected by TB.
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) and CDC recommend that those who are at increased risk for TB infection get tested. These high-risk groups include those who were born or have lived in regions where TB is more common. Other high-risk groups include those who live or have lived in places where TB is common, such as homeless shelters, group homes and prisons/jails, as well as those who work in hospitals or nursing homes and can be exposed to TB.
If you have been around someone with TB, seek medical attention. Talk to your doctor about how to stay healthy.
This report was published on the CDC website.
No information on funding sources or potential conflicts of interest was disclosed.