Obviously, people that have been in contact with the tuberculosis bacterium and have it resident in their body are more likely to develop active TB. The time between this original infection with the bacteria and development of the disease can range from one month to many decades. If a person is infected with the tubercle bacilli, it is not certain that he or she will develop TB, but the chance of this happening can be reduced, using prophylactic drug treatment.
This is drug therapy treatment given to patients infected with the tuberculosis germ, but the germ is not active. The treatment focuses on preventing inactive TB from becoming active. Those individuals that harbour the disease-causing bacteria in their bodies can be distinguished from those who do not using a tuberculin skin test. If you react positively to the test, then the bacteria are in your body.
Studies have shown that drug treatment with isoniazid (INH), given for 6-12 months, has significantly reduced the chances of the disease developing from inactive to active. In cases where the preventative treatment was used for 12 months, a 93% reduction in the rate of TB was observed. INH is the only drug that has been sufficiently tested, with a positive outcome, for this purpose.
To find out more about the drug Isoniazid, visit Prescription Drugs for Lung Diseases