Type 2 Diabetes – Diabetes, Smoking, and Tuberculosis

According to research completed at the University of Massachusetts, avoiding both Type 2 diabetes and smoking can be helpful in preventing death from tuberculosis or TB. People diagnosed with diabetes are known to have a higher than average risk of tuberculosis, and according to a study reported on in February 2013 in PLos One, TB's severity and how much treatment could also be influenced by diabetes and by smoking.

The study included 657 people with tuberculosis at the National Masan Tuberculosis Hospital in the Republic of Korea.

  • the people with diabetes, 25 percent of the study participants, had worse chest x-rays than non-diabetic patients.
  • participants who had diabetes and smoked cigarettes had a 5.78 times higher risk of death in the first year of the study than those people who did not have diabetes or smoke.

From this information, it was concluded diabetes made cases of TB worse, and diabetics who smoked at least 1 pack of cigarettes per day were at an especially high risk of dying from TB.

When anti-tuberculosis drugs were discovered during the last century, the incidence of TB began to decline to the point of being considered a disease of the past. Then in the 1980's and 1990's it began to resurface. Tuberculosis drugs must be taken over long periods of time to be effective. When patients do not complete the entire course of this medication, cases in remission can resurge. When that happens, the new generation of TB organizations. are often resistant to the medication than killed their ancestors. Scientists are locked in an arms race against new strains of ever more resistant TB organizations.

Type 2 diabetes affects the immune system, making diabetics susceptible to infectious disease. Smoking destroys little hairs called cilia, which defend your lungs from dirt and microorganisms. It is no wonder the combination of diabetes and smoking is hazardous to individuals exposed to TB and those people who already have it.

Preventing Type 2 diabetes or keeping it under control, can go a long way towards preventing a variety of diseases including TB. So eat a healthy diet and get plenty of exercise to keep those blood sugars normal. Do not start smoking or see your doctor for guidance with a smoking cessation program.

Signs and symptoms of TB include:

  • cough,
  • poor appetite,
  • weight loss,
  • tiredness,
  • fever,
  • drenching night sweats, and
  • chills.

If you have a cough that persists for three weeks or more, coughing up blood, chest pain, especially with breathing or coughing, then see your doctor. If TB is diagnosed, take your medication faithfully according to directions, and keep appointments for rechecks. TB can be cured, but it must be treated until it is absolutely gone, even after you feel better.