All you need to know about Tuberculosis, explained in six short web clips
With World TB Day on march 24th, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is stressing that tuberculosis has once again become a killer disease. Today, TB kills 1.5 million people every year and ranks right behind HIV as the largest infectious killer worldwide. Not only that, but nearly half a million people across the globe are infected by strains of tuberculosis against which existing drugs are powerless.
How the body reacts to tuberculosis
An estimated one-third of the world’s population is infected with TB. But does that mean 2.3 billion people are sick? Fortunately not, as only a small proportion of them actually become so. To understand why, let’s take a closer look at the bacterium itself.
TB is one of the world’s biggest killers. But it doesn’t choose its victims uniformly. This clip presents maps and figures to give a better idea of the burden of the disease across the world.
The history of tuberculosis
TB is as old as man himself yet it continues to be a threat. Two new factors – co-infection with HIV and more and more drug-resistant forms of the disease – are making all the more urgent the need to find new ways to fight TB.
The weapons used to fight tuberculosis are now completely outdated: the diagnostic tools are slow, complicated and unreliable. The drugs used are 50 years old and an effective vaccine for children and adults is still a long way off. But despite all this, there's some good news on the horizon.
A patient with tuberculosis tells his story
Vardan Avetisyan, 60 years old, was diagnosed with TB eight years ago. He has multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. In 2013, he underwent surgery to have his left lung removed.
MSF and tuberculosis
For many years, MSF was hesitant about treating TB. Today, however, TB treatment has become an essential component of the healthcare provided by MSF.