Thoroughly confused (reports from home) - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-01-2009, 08:33 AM Thread Starter
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Thoroughly confused (reports from home)

Sorry for a second less-than-joyous post so soon...but...this is just puzzling the heck out of me. I just can't wrap my mind around it. This is the space age, isn't it, the miracle age where just about everything's preventable? There's no excuse for some things?

I talked to my mom yesterday, getting updates from back home. One of my aunts has developed tuberculosis. My brother (age 26) and his girlfriend(age 17 or 1 are still taking my 3 year old nephew to party and drink with this aunt. Everyone's still drinking & smoking after her, and believe me, I know my family...I can guarantee my aunt's doing nothing to prevent the spread of TB. She's more likely to deliberately cough on someone to see their reaction than cover her mouth. My brother's girlfriend is pregnant, due any day. What the #@!#!!! is missing in these people that they thinking nothing of exposing themselves, a toddler, and a not-yet-born child to this disease?? There's GOT to be something missing, a vacuum where their souls are supposed to be. They won't even get TESTED.

I asked my mom what SHE was doing to prevent getting TB. She was quiet, and then just told me "well, what the [email protected]#! can I do! It's not like I'm home much!"

And to top it all brother's started sleeping around on his teenager girlfriend, with girls very likely to have health issues...I swear, he's determined to give his child SOME disease before it's mother won't even tell the girlfriend that he's sleeping around her on her because she's in a delicate state, but she needs to know to protect her baby!

I seriously can't wrap my mind around this...this mentality, this carelessness...**** Typhoid Mary, I've got the Typhoid Clan going on can people in this day and age carelessly perpetuate disease? As it is, I've got three uncles with Hep C, and my grandma had TB is spreading through the family...God only knows what else...I guess I can justify this as Darwinism as its most basic...but...still...I'm stunned, I can't get this...

The only funny part is that they're still begging me to come home

I know this sounds silly, but...can anyone help me understand this?

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-01-2009, 10:35 AM
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Re: Thoroughly confused (reports from home)

I don't know where you live, but once TB is indentified in Texas, the State Health Department is involved through their county offices. Testing is done for free for all of the people living in the home.
People with prolonged, intense, or frequent contact are at risk and need to contact the Health Department.
If your aunt has been on her medication, and taking it as prescribed, for two weeks, she is most likely no longer contagious. And I say most likely because there is the rare person out there with a resistant form of TB.

TB is making a come back in the US. The source is from other countries - our citizens traveling to other countries and immigrants. Remember that idiot US citian who was diagnosed in France or Italy, didn't like the treatment regime offered there and hopped on a plane back to the US - against doctor's orders and common sense? I was really mad when I found out he was a doctor too. I wish they had pulled his license to practice medicine. Anyway, they had to tract down all of the fellow passengers and test/treat them.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-01-2009, 12:15 PM
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Re: Thoroughly confused (reports from home)

I had to be tested negative for TB before I was able to begin a certain medical treatment. Before that, I wasn't aware of how much the "old diseases" were making a comeback.

Do NOT go home. Protect your health if they won't protect themselves. Can you call the Health Services in your home county and tip them off? You could possibly do so anonymously and at least the County would get involved to help stop the spread of TB from those family members.

Best of luck, not a very nice situation for you to be in.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-01-2009, 02:17 PM
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Re: Thoroughly confused (reports from home)

TQ, how hard this is to hear about! I can tell your heart is breaking over this.

I think you have to take it like a type of craziness or mental 'illness', if you will. It's like people who drink and drive - at some level the behavior is suicidal or a cry for help. At least it sounds like your mom listens to you. Support her as much as you can by listening and making sure she takes care of herself. Maybe others in the family will gradually get sane, but they will have to do it on their own. And when the little one gets born, do what you can to help and protect the baby at all costs. Everyone else is an adult, but the baby will be truly innocent and helpless.

Lots of luck and prayers to you and your family.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-01-2009, 03:18 PM
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Re: Thoroughly confused (reports from home)


"FIV != PTS"
"SENIOR KITTIZENS ROCK! (between naps)"

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-01-2009, 03:31 PM
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Re: Thoroughly confused (reports from home)

It really is just ignorance.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-01-2009, 11:31 PM
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Re: Thoroughly confused (reports from home)

I can hardly believe that your aunt is exposing your family to TB. It's beyond unreasonable. I'd have a hard time keeping quiet about such disregard for the health of your family and the unborn baby. The Health Department should have some control over this!


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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-02-2009, 08:53 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Thoroughly confused (reports from home)

Thanks everyone...I'm mulling over what to do, and how to use everyone's advice. Your input in this disgusting and unfortunate situation is very appreciated.

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-02-2009, 11:51 AM
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Re: Thoroughly confused (reports from home)

TQ, this is a rough situation. I am assuming that your aunt has active tb, and is being treated with anitbiotics? If she is I am sure that the Health Department is involved (well, let's say that I hope so).

The family should not be in an enclosed area with her- which is especialy hard in the winter. Tb floats around in the air, and that is why the risk is higher when they are sharing the same breathing space. In hospitals patients are put in a negative pressure room where the air is sucked out and discharged directly to the outisde where it dissipates.

The unborn child is ok because it is not breathing the air, but is at risk if Mom becomes sick. Definitely the toddler is at a high risk just because his immune system is not as evolved. In my mind bringing him in to a potentially Tb contaminated area is equal to child abuse.

The family could be close to the aunt if they wear the appropriate masks (N-99 Hepa mask). The aunt could also wear a mask to help contain her secretions. If she had a positive sputum she would not be considered to be non infectious until she had several negative cultures (I can't remember now how many...3 sticks in my mind).

You can contact the Health Dept. anonymously to let them know about the situation. They are not only putting themselves at risk, but if someone else becomes a carrier they can infect other people outside of the house. The Health Dept. usually has the power to envoke some restrictions if your Aunt is deemed a public health risk.

Not a good situation, but also not out of the norm. Don't you dare go back there and get involved in all of this!

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