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How is bone tuberculosis diagnosed and treated?

Q: My daughter is suffering from bone tuberculosis (TB) at the knee joint. What are the remedies and how long does it take to recover? What are the best tests to know about the disease? Is it infectious? Will this disease affect the heart in any way? Is it curable? Please refer a best hospital to deal with this disease.

A:Tuberculosis is a curable disease. Antituberculosis medicines are available in the market and are not expensive at all particularly the primary treatment. Duration of treatment schedule depends upon the location of infection. In bone TB it may vary from 6 months to one year. For bone tuberculosis, the diagnosis depends on X-ray. Once the clinician suspects TB, the aspirate from the joint is sent for microbiological investigation for identification of the causative agent - Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The patients with tuberculosis have raised ESR. Bone TB is not contagious. TB per se is treated at home these days. The practice of isolating the patient is old, and has been discontinued. TB as such may affect any organ of the body, however, involvement of heart is extremely rare. Best hospitals for treatment of bone TB in Delhi are (this is my opinion which may be biased): Government set-up: All India Institute of Medical Sciences; Private set-up: Rockland hospital (Prof. P.K. Dave); Sita Ram Bhartia Hospital.

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