QuantiFERON®-TB predicts tuberculin skin test boosting in US foreign-born
Abstract:SETTING: Santa Clara County, Northern California.
OBJECTIVE: To characterize agreement of tuberculin skin test (TST) and QuantiFERON®-TB (QFT) with repeated testing.
DESIGN: Fifty-two subjects participating in an ongoing prospective study of infectious disease transmission were tested by TST and QFT at two home visits 3 months apart. Boosting was defined as reclassification of TST from negative to positive. Agreement and reproducibility of TST and QFT were assessed using kappa and McNemar statistics.
RESULTS: Of 48 individuals completing all tests, 75% were foreign-born (92% Latin America) and 58% were BCG-vaccinated. Initial TST and QFT were positive in 13 (27%) and 21 (44%), respectively, with an overall agreement of 67% (κ = 0.29). Ten (29%) of 35 initial TST-negative reactions boosted, nine of whom were BCG-vaccinated subjects. Boosting occurred in eight (67%) of 12 subjects who were initially QFT-positive/TST-negative. Compared to the second TST, initial QFT had a relative post-test probability of 76% (95%CI 0.58–0.95); boosting accounted for 8/16 (50%) of initial testing discordances.
CONCLUSION: Positive QFT in the setting of negative TST frequently anticipates a TST boost. This finding helps explain discordance between the two tests and may provide an alternative to serial TST testing.
Document Type: Regular Paper
Affiliations: Division of Infectious Diseases and Geographic Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California, USA
Publication date: 2005-09-01
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