Tuberculosis, commonly known as TB, is a potentially serious infectious disease that mainly affects the lungs. Here we’re diving into the process of getting a TB test and examination at Liberty Urgent Care, helping you to understand what to expect and why it matters.

What is Tuberculosis?

Tuberculosis is caused by a bacterium known as Mycobacterium tuberculosis. While it typically impacts the lungs, it can also affect other parts of the body such as the kidneys, spine, or brain. It’s spread through the air when a person with TB of the lungs or throat coughs, sneezes, or talks, and can be especially dangerous for individuals with weakened immune systems.

Why Should I Get Tested for TB?

Testing for TB is important for those who may have been exposed to the bacteria, are planning to travel to areas where TB is prevalent, or are required to do so for work, school, or immigration purposes. TB testing can help detect latent TB infection where a person has the TB bacteria in their body but does not have symptoms and cannot transmit the disease to others. Identifying latent TB allows for treatment to prevent the development of active TB disease.

The TB Test and Examination at Liberty Urgent Care

At Liberty Urgent Care, the process for TB testing typically includes the following steps:

  • Initial Consultation: Your healthcare provider will start with a detailed review of your medical history and any potential exposure to TB. They’ll also inquire about any symptoms that may suggest active TB disease, such as a persistent cough, fever, night sweats, or unexplained weight loss.

  • TB Skin Test (TST): The most common method of testing for TB at Liberty Urgent Care is the TB skin test, also known as the Mantoux tuberculin skin test. In this procedure, a small amount of tuberculin (a purified protein derivative of the TB bacterium) is injected under the skin of your forearm.

  • Test Interpretation: You’ll return to the clinic 48 to 72 hours after the skin test injection for a healthcare provider to check the reaction. If there’s a hard, raised red bump at the injection site, it could indicate TB infection. The size of the bump determines a positive result, and this can vary based on certain risk factors.

  • Further Evaluation: If you have a positive skin test, you’ll likely need additional tests to determine whether you have latent TB infection or active TB disease. This may involve a chest X-ray or a sputum test, which analyzes mucus from your lungs for TB bacteria.


After the TB Test and Exam

If your TB test is positive and you have latent TB infection, your healthcare provider may recommend treatment with antibiotics to prevent the development of active TB disease. If you have active TB disease, a more extensive treatment regimen will be required to effectively combat the disease.

Come into Liberty Urgent Care

A TB test and examination at Liberty Urgent Care is a critical step in identifying and treating both latent and active TB. As TB is a serious and potentially life-threatening illness, early detection is vital. Liberty Urgent Care’s dedicated healthcare team is committed to providing comprehensive care and ensuring you receive the necessary treatment if you test positive for TB. Whether you need a TB test for work, school, or personal reasons, don’t hesitate to seek out their services. They’re ready to help guide you through the process, ensuring your health and peace of mind.