The differences between Tuberculosis and HIV

 HIV is a virus; TB is a bacteria.

  • HIV weakens the immune system; TB needs a weakened immune system in which to flourish.
  • Once TB treatment is completed, it is stopped; ARV’s are taken for the rest of one’s life.

 The similarities between Tuberculosis and HIV

  •  HIV weakens the immune system. TB also weakens the immune system.
  • Treatment and prevention of both diseases require healthy nutrition, healthy lifestyle choices and the practice of good hygiene.
  • The HIV virus can become drug resistant – TB can also become drug resistant.

 The dangers of the combination

  •  An HIV positive person is 10 times more likely to develop TB.
  • HIV shortens the time between infection of TB and activation of the TB disease.
  • The mortality rate from TB is 4 times higher in people who are infected with HIV.
  • TB can shorten the time for HIV to become final stage AIDS.
  • HIV positive people have more chance of developing extra pulmonary TB
  • TB diminishes CD4 cells while increasing viral load.
  • The presence of HIV reduces the accuracy of a TB diagnosis
  • There is a higher chance of TB treatment failure.
  • Being HIV positive might cause an adverse reaction to TB medication.
  • Drug interactions may occur between TB drugs and ART.
  • TB medication, i.e. Rifampicin, may decrease the effectiveness of ARV’s if taken in combination. ARV’s are therefore adjusted to take this into account.
  • The development of multi-drug resistance to TB medication is greater because side effects from TB drugs may be more severe.