What is TB of the backbone in detail?  Please define its cause, symptoms, occurrence, spreading details, diagnosis, treatment and curing percentage.

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sjp eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Tuberculosis of the Spine is also known as Pott's disease. It is a very rare condition in which a TB infection spreads from another part of the body (usually the lungs) into two neighboring vertebrae. As a result, the disk between the two effected vertebra cannot receive the necessary nutrients and begins to deteriorate and die.  The destruction of the disk is often accompanied by swelling and visible masses of soft tissue or puss under the skin near the spine.

Symptoms of Pott's disease are similar to more typical cases of  TB but also may include back pain and swelling, a sharp bend near the middle of the spine along with a deepening of the chest.  Radiographs are more helpful in the early diagnosis of Pott's disease then X-rays, as the latter may not show the deteriaration of the disk until late into the disease.

The infection side of Pott's Disease can be treated in the same manner as more typical cases of Tuberculosis. However, the spinal damage caused by the disease can require surgery, and even then may leave permanent damage in the patients.

For more information on Pott's disease, see the sites below.