Understanding DOTS And Tuberculosis (TB)
What is Tuberculosis?
TB stands for Tuberculosis disease which is a kind of bacterial infection, manifesting itself primarily in the people with weak immune system. Such weakness is in turn linked to poor nutrition which finally finds its root in poverty. In developing nations like India, poor hygiene, malnourishment, poverty and lack of proper health facilities are compounding the statistics behind the disease.
What to talk about the downtrodden, the disease is finding its dwelling ground even in the elite of Chai-Samosa culture. The strange thing that most of us don’t know that the bacteria of TB (Tuberculosis) is much popular in the air all around us attacking each one of us every moment. But our body is mighty enough to kill any such infection. Only when the weak immune system of few of us loose the battle, the symptoms appear.
Is Tuberculosis can be cured completely?
Yes Of course, tuberculosis is fully curable. But this requires proper and regular medical intervention. Regularity of medication is very important because any such gap could make the bacteria drug resistant to that particular type of antibiotic. A new line of treatment for longer duration is required in case of drug resistant tuberculosis.
Hence, in a country like India, which is having majority patients who are illiterate and unaware about the significance of regularity of medication, doctors and medical staffs always face a challenge.
To counter this challenge, the strategy of DOTS was formulated which stands for Directly Observed Treatment, Short-Course. Under this, a designated person from the community, not necessarily a healthcare professional, is appointed who just ensures that the patient takes the prescribed medication daily and regularly. The observer makes the patient take the medicine in his own supervision. This ensures that there don’t occur any gap in the course of medicine and thus, any chance of the disease turning resistant is reduced.
Most of us confuse that DOTS is the medication for Tuberculosis (TB). However, the fact is that this is just a strategy to appoint a monitor who makes the patients take all the medication in front of him daily.
Don’t stigmatize the disease !
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