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Free Content Patients diagnosed with tuberculosis at death or who died during therapy: association with the human immunodeficiency virus

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OBJECTIVES: To describe trends and risk factors for tuberculosis (TB) mortality.

DESIGN: We calculated trends, identified patient characteristics associated with TB diagnosis at death or death during TB treatment, and described diagnostic procedures using the United States National TB Surveillance System for 1997–2005.

RESULTS: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infected TB patients had an adjusted odds ratio (aOR) of 4–11 for TB diagnosis at death (foreign-born non-Whites, aOR = 11) and of 3–19 for death during TB treatment vs. non-HIV-infected patients. Odds increased by age. Hispanic males had an aOR of 2 for TB diagnosis at death compared with female non-Hispanics. Multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) patients had a three times greater aOR of death during treatment than non-MDR patients. American Indians, Black females, residents in long-term care facilities, US-born patients, and non-HIV-infected homeless persons aged 25–44 years each had an aOR of 2 for mortality during treatment; 86% of pulmonary patients diagnosed at death had a chest radiograph, but 34% had no sputum smear or culture reported.

CONCLUSION: During 1997–2005, controlling for age, HIV remained the characteristic with the greatest aOR for TB diagnosis at death or death during TB therapy. Race/ethnicity, country of birth and homelessness further increased the adjusted odds of death. Results show possible missed opportunities for TB diagnosis prior to death.

Keywords: HIV; mortality; tuberculosis

Document Type: Regular Paper


Affiliations: Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA

Publication date: April 1, 2011

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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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