Iffat Shabbir, Rizwan Iqbal, Ejaz Qadeer.
Screening of tuberculosis in Kharal Abbasian Azad Kashmir.
Pak J Med Res Jan ;48(1):1-3.

Objective: To detect active tuberculosis in two areas of district Bagh, which were worst hit during October 8, 2005 earthquake leaving millions of people homeless and exposed to harsh weather and infections. Setting: This cross sectional study was done at Huda Bari camp and village Bani Pasari of district Bagh, Azad Kashmir from 17-24 November 2006. Methods: All cases above the age of 12 years complaining of fever, cough and weight loss for more than six weeks were screened for tuberculosis on 2 consecutive days by sputum microscopy for acid fast bacilli. Results: Out of 247 suspected cases screened, 12(4.8%) cases of tuberculosis were picked by positive sputum microscopy for acid fast bacilli in the sputum. Of 12 cases 5 were on anti-tuberculous treatment before earthquake but had discontinued the treatment following this disaster, and developed symptoms in due course of time. Rest 7 cases were new, and were picked during screening. The reporting and recording system for tuberculosis in Azad Kashmir was very efficient and most paramedics had already located almost all known tuberculosis patients who were displaced due to earthquake and had motivated them to continue with the treatment for tuberculosis. Conclusion: Of 247 suspected cases of tuberculosis 12 cases (5%) had active tuberculosis. Timely relocation and treatment of already known cases and identification of the new cases had been a major step in averting another disaster following earthquake.

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