Hans Jürgen Hoffmann

Latent tuberculosis infection is prevalent among socially marginalised citizens in Aarhus, Denmark

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Introduction: Even in low-incidence countries, tuberculosis
(TB) is common among socially marginalised people.
Latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) comprises a reservoir
for future disease, and screening for LTBI and TB in these
groups aid in the prevention and early detection of TB.
Methods: We performed a screening for LTBI with interferon
gamma release assay (IGRA) testing, and TB screening
with sputum smear examination at four shelters and four
additional locations in a Danish urban area. Additionally,
shelter volunteers were offered examination.
Results: A total of 145 subjects were tested; 124 with sputum
smear and 100 with IGRA. Overall, 13 (13%) had LTBI,
and one (0.8%) had smear-negative, culture-positive, noncavitating
TB. Among 107 socially marginalised citizens,
persons of Greenlandic origin had significantly more LTBI
(40.0%) than Danish subjects (9.1%) (odds ratio (OR) = 6.67
(range: 1.55-28.63)), and other ethnicities had an intermediate
prevalence of LTBI (18.2%) (OR versus Danish subjects
= 2.22 (range: 0.35-14.06)). A total of 38 shelter volunteers
were also included; IGRA was performed in 30 of those and
one (3.33%) had LTBI.
Conclusions: Our results confirm that a screening approach
may reveal early cases of active TB. LTBI is common
among the socially marginalised people, but varies substantially
with ethnic origin.
Funding: T-spot.TB kits were provided by Oxford Immunotec.
Trial registration: not relevant.
Original languageDanish
Article numberA5249
JournalDanish Medical Journal
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2016

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