The drop occurred in the internal bridge that connects the hospital's Cancer Research Building 1 to its Cancer Research Building 2 - a non-patient area of the hospital.
A small amount of the tuberculosis bacteria may have been released while being transported between two of the hospital's cancer research buildings, the spokeswoman, Kim Hoppe, said in an email.
"There was a small tube that contained a frozen sample and it was dropped and the lid came off while the sample was still frozen inside", said Dr. Landon King, executive vice dean at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. "The bacteria that cause tuberculosis are spread from one person to another through tiny droplets released into the air via coughs and sneezes", according to the Mayo Clinic.
Baltimore firefighters have evacuated two medical research buildings due to possible tuberculosis contamination. We have confirmed that there was no risk to anyone on campus.
Baltimore Fire Chief Roman Clark said people were allowed back into the research buildings by late afternoon.
Tuberculosis is an airborne disease that usually affects the lungs, but it can also impact the brain, kidneys or spine, according to the US National Library of Medicine. "So there is no preventive measure or testing required for anyone in the buildings as a result of this event".
Buildings at a Baltimore hospital were evacuated Thursday after employees were possibly exposed to tuberculosis, officials said. "If not treated properly, TB disease can be fatal". It has always been on the decline in the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there were 9,272 U.S. cases in 2016.
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