Scottish Students Contract Tuberculosis

Scottish Students Contract Tuberculosis

PRESS ASSOCIATION -- Two students on the same college course have contracted tuberculosis (TB), public health experts have confirmed.

The patients affected both attend Forth Valley College's Falkirk campus.

NHS Forth Valley said a 20-year-old man from the Lothians and an 18-year-old man from the Forth Valley area have the disease, which commonly affects the lungs. The cases are thought to be linked. Both individuals are currently receiving treatment and neither are infectious, the health board said.

PRESS ASSOCIATION -- Screening for TB has been carried out on the immediate families of the two men, whose identities have not been revealed.

NHS Forth Valley said teachers and students who go to the same classes at the college are also being screened as a precaution. Advice and information on TB will be passed to the wider college community to make sure that staff and students are aware of the symptoms.

Health chiefs stressed that the risk of infection is low.

Dr Jennifer Champion, consultant in public health medicine at NHS Forth Valley, said: "There are around 400 cases of TB in Scotland every year and the vast majority are successfully treated with antibiotics.

"TB is not easily passed from person to person and therefore the risk of infection among people who have been in close contact with a case is low."

Tuberculosis usually affects the lungs but it can also affect other parts of the body. Symptoms include a cough, loss of appetite, unexplained weight loss, fever/sweating, especially at night, tightness of the chest or chest pain.

The latest development comes two months after it emerged that three members of a Lanarkshire family were being treated for TB. Screening and advice were offered at a Blantyre nursery where one of the patients worked and at a hospital where another received treatment.


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