This horrible bug usually attacks the lungs, causing a cough that lasts a long time, weight loss, fever, night sweats, tiredness, loss of appetite and swellings in the neck.

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Key Fact

Many people in the world carry the bacteria that cause TB but do not become ill. This is called “latent TB”.1


  • How do people catch these disease?

    By breathing in droplets from the coughs and sneezes of someone infected with the bacteria that cause the disease.1

  • Which countries are affected?

    You can catch TB almost anywhere, but some countries in Africa and Asia are particularly high risk (see map).2

  • What are the symptoms?

    Persistent cough, sometimes with blood, fever, chest pains, night sweats, weight loss.1

  • How serious is the disease?

    If combination therapy is given in time, a patient can make a full recovery. Tuberculous meningitis poses a particular threat.3

  • Can I reduce the chances of catching the disease?

    You can take the following precautions to help reduce your risk of infection:

    • Visit your nearest convenient specialist travel health clinic for a risk assessment before your trip4
  1. World Health Organization. Factsheet. Tuberculosis. February 2018. Available online: (Last accessed May 2018)
  2. World Health Organization. Tuberculosis, estimated new cases, 2010. Available online: (Last accessed May 2018)
  3. Gesundheit. GV.AT. Tuberkulose. Available online: (Last accessed May 2018)

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