Interferon-gamma release assay versus tuberculin test in diagnosis of latent tuberculosis infection among healthcare workers, Sana'a city-Yemen

Dekra A. El-Aghbary1*, Jalal Y. Atf-allah2, Abdul Baki A. Al-Robasi1

1Department of Medical Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Sana'a University, Yemen.
2Typical police hospital Sana'a.

SUJMS • 2020 | Jan-Dec | Vol 14| Issue (1+2)


Tuberculosis (TB) is a serious public health problem that is responsible for about 1.7 million deaths each year. The current trends suggest that TB will still be among the 10 leading causes of global disease burden in the year 2020; with an estimation that one-third of the world’s population latently infected with TB 1, and therefore potentially at future risk of developing active disease.

Latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) is considered to be given when the immunological tests are positive and active TB is ruled out by way of X-ray bronchoalveolar lavage or

sputum-smear microcopy2. Working in healthcare is a well-known risk factor for TB. Even in countries with low TB incidence, the risk of TB in healthcare workers (HCWs) is elevated for a wide range of tasks in healthcare, and the prevention of nosocomial infection of HCW remains as a challenge 3.

Improvement of diagnostic methods for LTBI is an important step towards the goal of tuberculosis elimination, as laid out by the WHO Stop TB strategy 4. In Yemen, the identification of LTBI relies on the tuberculin skin test (TST) which is based on a type IV delayed hyper sensitivity reaction that

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