Health Questions and Answers

Question: When should one suspect that a patient may have PTB?


  • Cough with or without the following: night sweats, weight loss, anorexia, unexplained fever and chills, chest pain, fatigue and body malaise, is suggestive of TB.
  • A patient exhibiting cough of two weeks or more with or without accompanying symptoms will be referred to as a TB Symptomatic


  1. Tattevin P, Casalino E, Fleury L, Egmann G, Ruel M, Bouvet E. The validity of medical history, classic symptoms, and chest radiographs in predicting pulmonary tuberculosis: derivation of a pulmonary tuberculosis prediction model. Chest 1999; 115: 1248-1253
  2. Santha T, Garg R, Subraman R Chandrasekaran V, Selvakumar N, Sisodia RS, Perumal M, Sinha SK, Singh RJ, Chavan R, Ali F, Sarma SK, Sharma KM, Jagtap RD, Frieden TR, Fabio L, Narayanan PR. Comparison of cough of 2 or 3 weeks to improve detection of smear-positive tuberculosis cases among out-patient in India. Int J Tuberc Lung Dis. 2005; 9(1):61-68

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