I found Jenny Vereker's article on Tuberculosis (May 24) very worthwhile reading until it came to Doctor Charlotte Rayner's apparent answer to the question: “Why has TB regained a grip on our inner cities?”

Dr Rayner seemed to focus on new entrants to this country from areas where TB rates are higher, and on HIV subjects being more at risk because of their suppressed immunity; other medical experts are considering a strain of TB which is resistant to antibiotics.

All of these reasons are valid up to a point, but what I feel needs stressing is that the most vulnerable age group, young adults in cities, are not eating good food and drinking milk regularly.

One sees them on the streets eating junk food and drinking fizzy drinks at any time of the day or night.

Fifty years ago poverty was the main cause of malnutrition which led to disease.

There were few drugs to cure TB, but treatment and prevention was fresh air, nourishing food and adequate rest, and this is what is lacking today through ignorance, not poverty.

The last sentence of the article, which came from a Croydon Health Authority spokesman says that the approach to controlling TB includes “Informing the public to improve understanding and awareness of the disease” and I would add “and its prevention”.


Annandale Road