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Apr 13, 2001

My sister has AID she was just diagnose with TB and is under treatment. My mother is under tratment for stage one breast cancer. What are the chances my mother has of been infected. They have lived together since before my sister was diagnose. My sister said it's ok no one needs to be tested. She said the doctor told her she has what is like a cousine to TB. Please though I am concerne for my sister I'm also concerne about my mother's health. I love them both and will hate to loose them both. I am the only family member that is able to care for them outside the visiting nurse. Thank you, New York

Response from Dr. Feinberg

It sounds like your sister has Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) or Mycobacterium kansasii, both of which are "cousins" to TB and common in people with HIV. If your sister has MAC, then there's nothing to worry about, but if she has real TB or M. kansasii, then she is potentially infectious to others until she has received treatment so that what she coughs up no longer has germs in it.

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