Increased prevalence of pulmonary tuberculosis in male adults of sahariya tribe of India: A revised survey

P. R. Sharma, Sanjay Jain, R. N K Bamezai, P. K. Tiwari

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Background: A survey made in 1991-92, reported Sahariya, a primitive tribe of India (M. P.), having high prevalence of pulmonary tuberculosis. No follow-up study was undertaken thereafter. Objective: The present study was aimed to know the current status of tuberculosis (TB) in Sahariya after more than a decade of the last survey of 1991-92, as compared to that in Bhil, another primitive tribe living in the same area but never investigated for TB incidence. Materials and Methods: A total of 763 random sputum smears from Sahariya and 169 sputum smears from Bhil were screened for the presence of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M..tb) in order to evaluate the prevalence of pulmonary tuberculosis in both the tribes. Chi square (χ2) statistics was performed to study the correlation between age, sex on the one hand and with the prevalence of smear-positive pulmonary TB on the other hand, if any. Results: In Sahariya, the prevalence of smear-positive pulmonary TB was found increased significantly (P<0.005) to 0.454 as against 0.274 estimated in the earlier survey (1991-92). Males, particularly, appeared most affected (P<0.005; 0.382), especially adults (0.260). In contrast, among Bhil, the prevalence was very low. Conclusion: The observed increase in TB prevalence and its gender bias in Sahariya tribe indicate the high incidence rate and faster transmission of infection, especially in male sex.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)267-271
Number of pages5
JournalIndian Journal of Community Medicine
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2010



  • Bhil
  • prevalence
  • Sahariya
  • sputum smear
  • tuberculosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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