An unidentified person at Central Elementary School in Imperial Beach tested positive for tuberculosis and may have exposed others to the disease for more than one month, the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency reported Monday.

The time period for potential exposure was March 17 to April 23, according to the HHSA.

Microscopic image of Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria courtesy of the Center for Disease Control.

Symptoms of active TB include persistent cough, fever, night sweats and unexplained weight loss,” said Dr. Wilma Wooten, the county’s public health officer. “Most people who are exposed to TB do not develop the disease, but when it does occur, it can be treated and cured with medication — that’s why it’s important to identify those who have been exposed.”

Free testing for students who may have been exposed is scheduled for tomorrow at the school, 1290 Ebony Ave.

Tuberculosis is not uncommon in the San Diego region but has been decreasing in recent years, according to the HHSA.

To date, 59 cases have been reported this year in San Diego County.

Last year, 206 cases were reported in the county, the lowest number since local TB cases peaked at 469 in 1993, according to the health agency. There were 234 cases in 2012.

Information on the potential exposures is available by calling the school at (619) 628-5000 or the county TB Control Program at (619) 692-8621.

–City News Service

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