Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Simple strategy could prevent half of deadly tuberculosis infections

20.12.2007
By using a combination of inexpensive infection control measures, hospitals around the world could prevent half the new cases of extensively drug resistant tuberculosis (XDR TB), according to a new study in The Lancet by researchers at Yale School of Medicine.

Dubbed “Ebola With Wings” for its ability to spread and kill rapidly, XDR TB has been reported in 37 countries and has been identified in all regions of the world, including the United States. The disease has become an epidemic among hospitalized patients in South Africa, according to researchers on the Yale study. Cases of XDR TB have been diagnosed in every province of South Africa, and are particularly concentrated in the area surrounding Tugela Ferry.

To assess the spread of XDR TB, Yale School of Medicine M.D., Ph.D. student Sanjay Basu and the research team developed a computer model of a virtual world that incorporated over two years of data from Tugela Ferry. The model was 95 percent accurate at predicting the trends in XDR and other forms of TB in the region. The Yale study provides the first estimates of the XDR TB burden in South Africa. According to the model over 1,300 cases of XDR TB could arise in the Tugela Ferry region by the end of 2012.

“It is critically important to take steps now to prevent further spread of XDR TB,” said Basu. “If we wait to act, this form of TB will spread further in the community and beyond borders. When a drug resistant strain hit New York in the 1990s, it cost over $1 billion to bring under control.”

Tuberculosis is caused by bacteria that target the lungs and is spread through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. HIV-positive people constitute a vast majority of the XDR TB cases, given their greater risk of infection.

The authors write that the best way to address this type of TB effectively is to change the healthcare environment. Use of masks alone would prevent fewer than 10 percent of cases in the general epidemic, though they would help many healthcare workers, say the researchers. Reducing time spent in the hospital and shifting to outpatient therapy could prevent nearly one-third of cases, they note. About half of XDR TB cases could be prevented by addressing hospital overcrowding, improving ventilation, enhancing access to HIV treatment, and providing faster diagnostic tests, say the study authors.

Basu said that the problem is compounded in South Africa where there are long waiting lists of up to 70 patients hoping to gain admission to hospitals, and crowded wards with as many as 40 people packed into one room. Some of these patients have to sleep on the floor, and many travel for days to reach the hospital.

“We can do a lot to change what is going on,” said senior author Gerald Friedland, M.D., a professor of medicine at Yale. “This is a train crash between the two epidemics of HIV and TB, and we have to address both problems together to fix this situation.”

Karen N. Peart | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.yale.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Biofilm discovery suggests new way to prevent dangerous infections
23.05.2017 | University of Texas at Austin

nachricht Another reason to exercise: Burning bone fat -- a key to better bone health
19.05.2017 | University of North Carolina Health Care

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

Im Focus: Using graphene to create quantum bits

In the race to produce a quantum computer, a number of projects are seeking a way to create quantum bits -- or qubits -- that are stable, meaning they are not much affected by changes in their environment. This normally needs highly nonlinear non-dissipative elements capable of functioning at very low temperatures.

In pursuit of this goal, researchers at EPFL's Laboratory of Photonics and Quantum Measurements LPQM (STI/SB), have investigated a nonlinear graphene-based...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Physicists discover mechanism behind granular capillary effect

24.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Measured for the first time: Direction of light waves changed by quantum effect

24.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>