Prevalence and knowledge of tuberculosis among the residents of urban slums of Shillong, Meghalaya, India

Amrita Sarkar, Himashree Bhattacharyya, Kaushik Talukdar, Gajendra Kumar Medhi, Star Pala


Background: The present survey on tuberculosis (TB) was carried out to fill up the lagging information on TB in Meghalaya and also to serve as a base for further research on various aspects of Tb in this state. The aims and objectives were to study prevalence of TB and TB suspects in urban slums of Shillong and to assess the knowledge about tuberculosis among the participants of the study.

Methods: The present community-based, cross-sectional study was conducted during January 2016 to March 2016 in urban slums of Shillong, India.

Results: Out of 330 persons interviewed, 8 had TB during the past 5 years making the period prevalence to be 24/1000 population. Prevalence of TB suspects was 18/1000 population and that of pulmonary TB cases was found to be 15/1000 population. The female/ male case ratio was 3:1. The highest TB load (62.5%) was found in the most productive age group of 20-29 years and 83% of the cases in the women were in their reproductive age group. Treatment initiation rate was 87.5% and treatment success rate was 87.5%. Defaulter rate was 12.5% and reason for default was side-effects from medication. The study revealed that 75% of the participants had heard about TB, 65.99% knew about the mode of transmission of the disease, 76.11% knew about the symptoms, 85.44% claimed the disease was curable with proper treatment, 42.51% had heard about DOTS, 52.63% claimed that the disease is preventable and 32.39% knew about BCG vaccine. The most common source of knowledge about Tb was television (34.82%).

Conclusions: A high prevalence of TB was observed in the present study.


Infection, Meghalaya, Pulmonary TB, Prevalence, Shillong, Tuberculosis

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