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Published On: Tue, Jul 16th, 2013

USF reports confirmed case of tuberculosis in Tampa campus student

A University of South Florida (USF), Tampa campus student has been confirmed positive for tuberculosis (TB), according to a USF news release today.

Public domain image/ TheCustomOfLife

Public domain image/ TheCustomOfLife

The student is undergoing TB drug therapy, recovering in isolation, and is no longer a health risk to others according to health officials.

The Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County Tuberculosis Center, in collaboration with USF, has notified approximately 90 students, faculty, staff, and community members who were at risk of exposure and will begin testing this group next week.

“USF and the Department of Health are working together to ensure the health and safety of all students, employees, and members of the student’s community,” said Florida Department of Health – Hillsborough County Tuberculosis Center Manager Jylmarie Lewis.

This is the first case of TB on the campus in 2013 – the last case of TB at the University was in May of 2012 – and the incidents appear to be unrelated.

TB is a bacterial infection caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It primarily infects the lungs but can infect virtually any organ in the body. Extrapulmonary infection is more common in children and those with immunodeficiencies. Less than 10% of immunocompetent people exposed will develop TB in their lifetime.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the general symptoms of TB disease include feelings of sickness or weakness, weight loss, fever, and night sweats. The symptoms of TB disease of the lungs also include coughing, chest pain, and the coughing up of blood. Symptoms of TB disease in other parts of the body depend on the area affected.

TB is spread person-to-person when an infected person coughs, talks, sings or sneezes. Typically, only people who have close, day-to-day contact with an infected person are at risk of contracting the disease.

Students and employees of USF with additional questions may call the Student Health Services nurse line at (813) 974-1797, Monday through Friday, from 8:00 a.m. through 5:00 p.m. If a student or employee not identified/notified by the Department of Health wants to be tested for TB, they may schedule an appointment at Student Health Services by calling (813) 974-2331. Student Health Services will charge for services rendered.

All other inquiries can be directed to the Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County at (813) 307-8047.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today.

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