Pediatric Tuberculosis Testing Clinic in Port Matilda, PA
Bacteria cause tuberculosis. Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis) is the most common cause. Many youngsters infected with M. tuberculosis do not progress to active TB and instead remain in the hidden TB phase. When an infected person coughs, sneezes, speaks, sings, or laughs, TB bacteria spreads through the air. Unless a youngster has recurrent contact with the germs, he or she is unlikely to become ill. Personal goods such as clothing, bedding, cups, eating utensils, a toilet, or other items touched by a person with TB do not spread the disease. If you believe your child should be tested for tuberculosis, then you can come see us here at Olivero Pediatrics. Dr. Daniel Olivero, MD., is your local provider of pediatric tuberculosis testing service in Port Matilda, PA. We are conveniently located at 1243 Skytop Mountain Rd. Suite 4, Port Matilda, PA 16870. Contact us today or request an online appointment to learn more about testing and treatment at our clinic or keep reading.
Table of Contents:
What should parents know about tuberculosis in children?
What are the common symptoms of TB infection?
How do you test for TB in children?
How is TB typically treated?
Do you offer pediatric tuberculosis testing service in Port Matilda, PA?
In the U.S., tuberculosis (TB) in children under 15 years old (also called pediatric TB) is a public health problem. Infants, young children, and immunocompromised kids are more likely to develop life-threatening forms of TB, like TB meningitis. Most TB cases are seen in children under 5 and adolescents under 10.
TB is caused by a specific bacterium that’s spread through the air when a person with TB coughs, sneezes, speaks, or sings, and another person breathes in the bacteria released. It’s easy to spread the condition, especially to those you are close with, but the forms of TB that most commonly affect children are typically less infectious than the forms that affect adults.
It’s possible for a person to have TB but not have any symptoms of sickness. This is called latent TB. It’s also possible for a person to get sick and have pretty obvious symptoms. We can evaluate symptoms and diagnose TB here at Olivero Pediatrics.
The most common signs and symptoms of TB infection in a child are usually:
– Sick feelings
– Feelings of weakness or lethargy
– Less of a willingness to play
– Weight loss
– Night sweats
– And/or similar symptoms
Infants, young children, and immunocompromised children are at the highest risk of developing the most severe forms of TB and experiencing the most severe symptoms.
If symptoms aren’t present, then a TB skin test or TB blood test is necessary in order to diagnose the condition. TB skin testing is considered safe for children and is usually the better option over TB blood testing for young patients under 5 years old. With the TB skin test, a small needle is used, but it merely places a small amount of testing material under the child’s skin. Sometimes other tests like a chest X-ray can help a professional make a diagnosis. Other times a sample of a patient’s sputum (phlegm) is needed for testing. These other tests can be useful when a child has symptoms of TB or has had contact with someone who has TB.
Prior to testing, tell the professional if your child has ever had a “positive” reaction to a TB skin test or a TB blood test, or if your child has been previously treated with TB drugs.
For latent TB, treatment depends on a young patient’s particular case. Isoniazid-rifapentine can treat the condition in children over 2 years old. Rifampin or isoniazid can be used instead in some cases. For TB disease, treatment entails taking multiple anti-TB medicines. These medicines must be taken for the full duration of 6 to 9 months in order to prevent complications.
Yes, at Olivero Pediatrics, your child can be tested and treated for TB if necessary. To learn more about testing and treatment, reach out to us today. Our clinic is located at 1243 Skytop Mountain Rd. Suite 4, Port Matilda, PA 16870, and you can get ahold of us at (814) 256-4466. If you like, you can make a consultation or appointment with us online.
We’d be happy to speak with you for any reason, so don’t hesitate to reach out if you believe we can help your child here at Olivero Pediatrics! We serve patients from Port Matilda PA, Waddle PA, Julian PA, State College PA, Bellefonte PA, Pennsylvania Furnace PA, and Pine Grove Mills PA.