The Guindo (theguindo) wrote in little_details,
The Guindo

Tuberculosis- Progression and death

Tuberculosis, symptoms, death, progression, consumption, various combinations thereof. I even looked up Doc Holliday.

I can find lots of technical stuff on tuberculosis, but I need to write somebody dying of it. The medical terms aren't helping me understand the disease much. What I can't find is information on 1) how fast the disease actually progresses, 2) exactly what it does to you (it infects the lungs sure but what does it do to them?) 3) how do people die of it? Like, wiki says Doc Holliday was laid up for two months before he actually died, but in Moulin Rouge (lol like it's a real reference, I know) the girl was pretty active up until she died.

As far as I can tell, shortness of breath is the second biggest symptom, next to the coughing. I'd assume both would get worse as the disease goes, but how bad before you are actually at the point of dying? And what is it that actually kills you?

Char in question gets no medical attention for it (tech is like American civil war era + magic. Magic can't do anything for him, and afaik they didn't really have any real treatments for consumption in that tech era. It's known to be contagious and he wears a scarf over his face in the hopes of preventing that). He's kind of trying to soldier on through it like nothing's wrong. I'd like for him to be fairly active up until the moment he actually collapses (though the collapse precedes a length of time spent laid up in bed before he actually dies, I'd like for it to only be a few days rather than a few months).

I don't want to write this like a pure dramatist, I'd like for people who may be knowledgeable to not roll their eyes at me when they see this. Things I need to know include 1) how long would he have to have had it before getting to this point (years? months? how many)? I realize you can have it dormant for a long time before it actually turns active, but once symptoms start manifesting, how fast does it progress? (And how long does it tend to lie dormant before manifesting symptoms?) 2) What are the symptoms at near-death (fever? delirium? up to the collapse and during the bed-ridden period)? What would it be that caused him to collapse/need to be bedridden? 3) How active is it possible to have him be if he's only going to be bed-ridden for a week or so before dying? 4) What is the actual death like? How does one die of TB?

Char is a 47yo male in otherwise good health (I realize the irony of saying that, but I mean TB is his only condition), if that factors in to any of these answers.

If this is all just completely unrealistic then lemme know the real deal so I can scrap it and start over with what's right. Any and all info you got will help tonnes.
Tags: ~medicine: illnesses: lung problems
  • Post a new comment


    default userpic
    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.