TB Survey among Chenchus of Nallamalai Forest Area
TCR&TI Andhra Pradesh
V Nagendrakumar OSVD Prasad S Mohan VC Vijaykumar
Sputum Examination Tuberculin Test Prevalence Rate BCG Vaccination
Department of Tribal Welfare Government of Andhra Pradesh
The survey conducted by Tribal Cultural Research and Training Institute, Andhra Pradesh in 1993. It is a rapid appraisal of the prevalence of tuberculosis among the Chenchus of Nallamalai Forest Area and it is highlighted the diagnosis of lung tuberculosis is based on mainly the sputum examination of the patient who the Chenchu tribe in particular and x-ray examination of his or her chest/breast. For the Chenchu children, another diagnostic tool is the tuberculin test more applicable. The research team selected the sample for the study on random method for purposively. They examined that the Chenchus, traditionally a food gathering tribe, are predominantly found in Nallamalai hills which spreads over Kurnool, Prakasam and Mahaboobnagar districts. The Chenchus are Telugu speaking people. These people origin some legend through animals and vegetation. It is stated that the name Chenchu is derived from a person who was under a tree i.e. chettu in Telugu. In Integrated Tribal Development Agency (ITDA) exclusively for the socio-economic development of the Chenchus, was established in 1975 with its headquarters at Hyderabad and later it has been shifted to Srisailam, Kurnool district in 1988. This study revealed that prevalence of tuberculosis is high in households without proper ventilation and separate kitchens. Another causative factor for depletion of natural resistance to combat the T.B. bacteria is their insufficient and imbalanced diets during the lean periods. The team noticed from the study that out of 149 households, above twenty per cent of the Chenchus had never visited the hospitals because they felt shy to converse to the strangers. The majority of the persons affected with tuberculosis are the family members of consanguineous marriages compared to families of no-consanguineous marriages. The socio-cultural practices coupled with unhygienic conditions in tribal areas are obviously a cause for the rapid spread of this highly infectious disease. In order to overcome this, a comprehensive T.B. eradication programme has to be made to control further spread of T.B. and afford relief on proper treatment to the afflicted.