Myths and realities about knowledge, attitudes and practices of household contacts of tuberculosis patients

N. Gil, L. Lopez, D. Rodríguez, M. Rondón, A. Betancourt, B. Gutierrez, Z. V. Rueda

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle in an indexed scientific journalResearchpeer-review

    6 Scopus citations


    SETTING: Five Colombian cities: Villavicencio, Pereira, Cucuta, Bucaramanga and Bosa. OBJECTIVE: To describe the knowledge, attitudes and practices related to tuberculosis (TB) in household contacts (HHCs) of TB patients. METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted. The estimated sample size required was 855. The World Health Organization guide 'Advocacy, communication and social mobilization for TB control: a guide to developing knowledge, attitude and practice surveys' was translated into Spanish and adapted to the dialect of each city. HHCs were invited to participate in the study and included if they agreed. RESULTS: We interviewed 878 HHCs. Most of them knew that TB was transmitted by airborne droplets; however, 52.2% also said that TB could be transferred from one person to another by sharing plates or clothes or shaking hands. Fifty-five per cent of HHCs acquired TB-related information from health care workers, and 44% from family members and friends. Fear was the main reaction reported by HHCs when they were informed of a TB diagnosis (60%). Eighty-five per cent of HHCs answered that the community rejects or avoids TB cases. CONCLUSION: There are significant gaps in the knowledge about TB and the stigmatisation associated with it. Educational strategies should be designed together with the community to demystify many misconceptions about TB.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1293-1299
    Number of pages7
    JournalInternational Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease
    Issue number11
    StatePublished - 1 Nov 2018

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    This research was fully funded by the International Organization for Migration, Geneva, Switzerland, and the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana, Medellin, Colombia. The funders had no role in the study design, data collection or analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript. Conflicts of interest: none declared.

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2018 The Union.


    • Attitudes
    • Household contacts
    • Knowledge
    • Practice
    • Tuberculosis


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