16.1.1  Symptoms of childhood TB

Children with TB develop chronic symptoms in most cases, and TB may be a more acute disease in the presence of HIV infection. The commonest symptoms that parents notice are:

  • Chronic cough: persistent cough (present for more than two weeks) and not improving.
  • Fever: fever of greater than 38°C for 14 days, after common causes such as malaria and pneumonia have been ruled out.
  • Weight loss: documented weight loss or failure to gain weight.
Figure 16.1  A mother suspected of TB coughing and releasing droplet nuclei into the air that could infect other members of the household, particularly children. People with HIV are at greater risk of being infected with TB.

16.1  Diagnosis and management of TB in children

16.1.2  Signs of childhood TB