It is caused by infection from the bacteria called Mycobacterium tuberculosis . This bacteria can be transmitted from person to person, usually by mucous droplets that became airborne when the sick individual coughs, sneezes, laughs, sings, or even breathes .
Our one-year-old daughter has been in medication for almost two months now. Prior to her diagnosis and medication, we were really worried about her poor weight gain and low appetite.
It was also frustrating that we were totally clueless on what was causing it back then. In our experience, below were the symptoms we noticed.
Primary Complex Symptoms
- Poor weight gain, (her weight was playing around 17.5 lbs for 3 consecutive months.)
- Low food appetite
- Enlargement/bulky lymph node on the neck area
During our monthly check up, Yesha’s pedia prescribed Heraclene so she can catch up on her weight. The pedia told us that if her weight did not improve after a month, it could be due to her weakened lungs.
Of course I couldn’t believe and accept it, how could an energetic, unsickly and active baby have weakened lungs! As a mother, it was really hard to take that news.
So the possibility of lung problem has made me feel down for a few days. But luckily, as I was browsing some posts on a public forum, I stumbled upon a post of one mom who had the same situation as me. And that’s then I learned about Primary Complex.
After stumbling upon this disease, I decided to educate myself about it by searching and reading information on the net. And having done so prepared me on Yesha’s eventual diagnosis.
PPD Skin Test
After a month of religiously giving Heraclene to Yesha, her weight did not improve and remained the same. Though I already know more about primary complex by that time, it still saddened me and my husband.
So our pedia performed a PPD skin test on Yesha, and asked us return after two days for the reading of the result.
After 48 hours, the result was negative. This prompted our pedia to request for a chest x-ray. A day after we got the x-ray, the radiologist suggested to consider Pneumonia.
However, our pedia, being an experienced doctor, disagreed with the radiologist’s interpretation. She diagnosed primary complex instead due to the fact that Yesha has no bouts of cough.
Below are the photos of Yesha’s x-rays. Normally, a healthy lungs should be clean and clear. But in her x-rays below, you can easily notice the cloudiness in her lung’s xrays.
Chest X-Ray posteroanterior (PA) view
Chest Xray Lateral View
Treatment with Kidz Kit 3
Our pedia prescribed Kidz Kit 3 which costs Php475 per box.
Php 80 – Curazid (Isoniazid)
Php 350 – Natricin (Rifampicin)
Php 112 – Zcure (Pyrazinamide)
Each pack of Kidz Kit 3 contains:
2 – 120mL bottles of Zcure (Pyrazinamide) 250mg per 5mL suspension
1 – 120mL bottle of Natricin (Rifampicin) Forte 200mg per 5mL suspension
1 – 120mL bottle of Curazid (Isoniazid) Forte 200mg/10 mg per 5mL syrup
Each 5mL of Zcure suspension contains 250mg pyrazinamide
Each 5mL of Natricin Forte suspension contains 200mg rifampicin
Each 5mL of Curazid forte syrup contains 200mg isoniazid and 10mg pyridoxine hydrochloride (Vitamin B6)
How to Apply Kidz Kit 3
The medication will last for 6 months. Quite a long time? The medication, yes, but you need not wait for 6 months to see the results. For one and half months, Yesha’s weight increased from 17.5 lbs to 19.4 lbs. Yesha’s appetite for food also returned to normal.
6.30am : Rifampicin (yesha’s wake up time, empty stomach)
7.00am : Isoniazid (30 mins after Rifampicin)
7.30am : Breakfast time (30 mins after Isoniazid )
after bfast : Pyrazinamide (Anytime during the day)
*Since Rifampicin and Pyrazinamide are both suspensions, they must be shaken well before giving to your child. Rifampicin and Izoniazid must be taken for the whole six months of medication while Pyrazinamide is only for the first two months.
We also learned that using a syringe (without needle) instead of medicine dropper is easier, cleaner and faster, so that’s what we have been doing for the past months. After almost two months, Yesha is slowly gaining weight and getting plumper.
How to Know if your child is completely healed from Primary Complex
After 6 months of medicating Yesha, I was still worried; I can still feel the small bulge (lymph nodes) in her neck. We were asked by our pedia to have another x-ray examination to confirm if our daughter has been completely healed.
I was really praying hard that our 6-month medication was successful because there was a week that we skipped taking Kidz Kit 3 due to Yesha’s diarrhea.
New Chest X-ray
The radiology report stated complete regression of the previously noted hilar lymphadenopathies suggestive of healed primary Koch’s Infection. Of course I couldn’t understand the report. And I wanted to hear from our pedia that Yesha was indeed healed from Primary Complex.
And to our total relief, our pedia confirmed that the medication was successful. Thank your Lord! Para akong natanggalan ng tinik! all the anxiety faded and was replaced with thankfulness.
The surest way to confirm if your child is already healed is through repeat chest xray. So below are Yesha’s xrays after 6 months of medication.
Comparing with the previous xrays, the new results have clearer images. In the new lateral view x-ray, you will see the three distinctive forms which are the lymph nodes, whereas the previous lateral view shows a very cloudy formless image.
And about the bulging lymph nodes that I could still trace from Yesha’s neck, our pedia told us that it really won’t disappear quickly. We have to wait for the bulge to completely.
1. Primary Complex or Tuberculosis in Children by Alexander Kennard (Read here)
2. Chin DP, Crane CM, Diul MY, et al. Spread of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in a community implementing recommended elements of tuberculosis control. JAMA 2000; 283:2968-2974