US Border with Rare Strain of TB
US Immigration and Customs Enforcement is holding a young immigrant from Asia who officials say is infected with a rare drug-resistant strain of tuberculosis.
The man was detained by the Border Patrol trying to sneak into South Texas on Nov. 27.
Several days later, while undergoing a medical screening at the Port Isabel Service Detention Center, he was diagnosed with extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis, the least treatable form of the disease.
Officials declined to identify the infected man other than to say he is young and from an Asian country.
It's only the third time since 2008 the strain has been detected in Texas, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.
"This is a very rare situation, and XDR is considered to be a very dangerous disease," said Carrie Williams, a spokeswoman for the department. "But it's not easily transmitted and we have no reason to believe community exposures have occurred."
Within two hours of being taken to the Port Isabel facility, the man underwent a medical screening that showed signs of tuberculosis and was transferred to the unit's airborne infection isolation facility, said Gillian Christensen, a spokeswoman for ICE in Washington.
"The individual remains in medical isolation in ICE custody, where he is receiving the appropriate treatment from ICE medical staff, in consultation with tuberculosis experts and the Centers for Disease Control," Christensen said.
Tuberculosis is a bacterial infection that can be fatal, but normally is easily treated, said Subramanian Dhandayuthapani, a microbiologist at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.
"It's very much treatable, Dhandayuthapani said. "But once they get infected with these multi-drug, extremely drug-resistant strains, it's questionable because those strains are difficult to treat."
The ease of global travel has made it easier for tuberculosis to travel to the US from other countries and the majority of the people infected here are foreign-born, he said. In the Rio Grande Valley, cross-border travel means strains of the bacteria make their way into the United States.
READ FULL SOURCE ARTICLE: 02/01/2013
Editor's Note: Yes, Mr. President and brethren open-borders Progressives, there are much bigger issues than political oportunism when securing the borders is honestly adressed, like disease and terrorism to name two...
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