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Tuberculosis is an infectious disease and is caused by a type of bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. One-third of the world's population is infected with the bacterium that causes tuberculosis. Each year about nine million people develop the disease and up to nearly two million people worldwide are killed by it.
The infection is spread when a person with an active TB infection in their lungs coughs or sneezes near a person without the infection. The bacterium is released in the expelled droplets and is inhaled by the healthy person.
Tuberculosis, however, is not a contagious disease unlike other infections like flu, the common cold etc. It affects people with a lowered immunity more commonly than those with an intact immune system.
Risk factors associated with getting tuberculosis include:-