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March 7, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - A case of tuberculosis has been reported at Helix Charter High School in La Mesa.  Students and staff may have been exposed, according to the County Health and Human Services Agency.

HHSA is working closely with the school to notify anyone who was potentially exposed. The period of possible exposure was from Sept. 8, 2013 through Feb. 21. Free testing for students who were potentially exposed took place on March 6 and 7 at the school.

“Many hours of close, indoor contact with an infected individual is usually needed to spread TB to others and most people who are exposed do not develop TB,” said Dr. Eric McDonald, County deputy public health officer. “TB is easiest to treat and cure with medication when identified early, which is why it’s important to identify those who have been exposed,” he added.

Symptoms of active TB include persistent cough, fever, night sweats, and unexplained weight loss.

Countywide, there have been 14 cases of TB  reported so far in 2014. There were 206 TB cases in 2013 and 234 reported in 2012.

For more information about the potential exposure, call the County of San Diego TB Program at (619) 692-8621

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