ELYRIA — An unidentified person at Elyria High School has been diagnosed with a confirmed case of tuberculosis, prompting testing for other students and teachers in the building.
Parents learned of the case Monday afternoon in a call from the district’s automated messaging services. Information also went home with students to parents explaining how the district plans to react to the diagnosis.
According to a message on the district’s website, the affected person is under the care of medical staff and is expected to make a full recovery.
While tuberculosis, also called TB, is contagious, there is a low risk of developing the disease, which is a bacterial infection of the lungs that in severe cases can expand to other organs. Still, school officials acknowledge that there is a small chance that some students and staff may be at risk.
The Centers for Disease Control said TB is spread through the air from one person to another. The test for the disease is easy and is done on the skin by a certified health official.
The skin test is most often used and according to the CDC is performed by injecting a small amount of fluid into the skin in the lower part of the arm. The person given the tuberculin skin test is then checked within 48 to 72 hours to see if there is a reaction on the arm.
Amy Higgins, district spokeswoman, said the tests will be conducted Wednesday, and health officials will return to check the results Friday.
“The risk is low, but officials at Mercy are recommending the testing as a precaution,” she said. “The testing is strictly on a volunteer basis, but it will be available schoolwide.”
Health officials also will return in 10 weeks to repeat the test.
Contact Lisa Roberson at 329-7121 or email@example.com.