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Free Content Lymph node biopsies in HIV-infected and non-infected children with persistent lung disease

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Abstract:

OBJECTIVE: The diagnosis of opportunistic infections in children with persistent lung disease (PLD) who are infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is difficult to establish, especially in resource-poor countries. Lymphadenopathy is a frequent associated clinical finding among these children. We evaluated the usefulness of excision lymph node biopsies in determining an aetiological diagnosis in HIV-infected and non-infected children with PLD.

METHOD: Forty-five children with PLD and significant lymphadenopathy were subjected to lymph node biopsy. Of these, 27 were HIV-infected. All subjects had excision biopsies; 39 (86.7%) of these cases also underwent fine needle aspiration cytodiagnosis (FNAC) and trucut needle biopsies.

RESULTS: Tuberculosis was identified as the final diagnosis in 11 (40.7%) and 12 (66.7%) HIV-infected and non-infected children, respectively. Ancillary investigations (Mantoux, gastric washings) suggested a diagnosis of tuberculosis in eight (72.7%) and eight (66.7%) of the final diagnoses of tuberculosis among HIV-infected and non-infected children, respectively. Lymph node biopsies identified a further three (27.3%) and four (33.3%) more cases of tuberculosis as compared to ancillary investigations among HIV-infected and non-infected groups, respectively. Results of FNAC and trucut biopsy showed good correlation with excision biopsy: 96.4% and 97.4%, respectively. However, adequate samples were obtained in only 23 of 39 FNAC and 33 of 39 trucut biopsies.

CONCLUSION: Excision lymph node biopsies form a useful adjunct investigation in children with PLD and generalised lymphadenopathy. The most common disease identified among HIV-infected and non-infected children in Durban, South Africa, is tuberculosis. FNAC and trucut biopsies may also be useful in the evaluation of lymphadenopathy when appropriate specimens are obtained.

Keywords: HIV; children; lymph node biopsies; persistent lung disease; tuberculosis

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: 1: Departments of Paediatrics & Child Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Natal, Congella, South Africa 2: Department of Paediatric Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, University of Natal, Congella, South Africa 3: Department of Anatomical Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Natal, Congella, South Africa

Publication date: February 1, 2000

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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