Sunday, March 22, 2009

Tuberculosis in Singapore

My earlier post was based on the abbreviated online report. Today's ST carries a more detailed report where indeed some of the points I raised was covered. At least we are all on the same page!

But the point remains that we need to make a distinction between fresh TB infections (which mean catching the stuff because someone is coughing in your face) and the reinfected cases where, you actually have the bug but is gets out of control because of stress, reduced immunity or just age etc. The former is the real problem to worry about if that is indeed rising. The latter is something we need to investigate more to find out why.

But like I pointed out before, the incidence really isn't rising alarmingly. The following graph is reproduced from past MOH data, and is something I posted before. See for yourself.


zoe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
zoe said...

i want to thank you for actually making an effort to come up with an entry with extremely good details (graph and tables)
i am a singaporean jc science student actually,
i got stuck halfway while brainstorming about my Project Work topic called [EMERGENCY]. i have chosen " Tuberculosis Outbreak " as a possible Emergency for singapore in the future. And i am GLAD that i've found ur site. REALLY, info is good. i hope that u can share ur sources with me to help me with my work.
Also, i would like to discuss with you about the Causes for this 'possible outbreak'.

Please email me, would appreciate an asap response!

gigamole said...

Hi Zoe,

Feel free to email me at

I would love to hear about your project. The graphs are most reproduced from public domain MOH sources.

One of the possibilities for current increase which has not been discussed publicly (there was however a recent WHO report,, about TB and HIV)is whether this increase in TB reactivation is related in some way to the increase in HIV. MOH doesn't tell us.