Interferon-γ release assay in the diagnosis of latent tuberculosis infection in arthritis patients treated with tumor necrosis factor antagonists in Korea

Boksoon Chang, Hye Yun Park, Kyeongman Jeon, Joong Kyong Ahn, Hoon-Suk Cha, Eun-Mi Koh, Eun-Suk Kang, Won-Jung Koh
Clinical Rheumatology 2011, 30 (12): 1535-41
The aim of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of the interferon-γ release assay (IGRA) for the diagnosis of latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) in arthritis patients who received tumor necrosis factor (TNF) antagonist in Korea. The study involved 107 consecutive patients: 61 (57%) with ankylosing spondylitis and 46 (43%) with rheumatoid arthritis. Screening tests were performed including the tuberculin skin test (TST), the QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube (QFT-IT) test, and chest radiography. A positive QFT-IT test result, regardless of TST results, was considered an indication for LTBI treatment. If the QFT-IT results were indeterminate, a positive TST was regarded as an indication for LTBI treatment. A Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) scar was found in 63 patients (59%). LTBI treatment was performed in 37 patients (35%), including 36 with positive QFT-IT results and one with indeterminate QFT-IT and positive TST results. No patients developed tuberculosis during a median of 18 months (range, 13-26 months) of TNF antagonist therapy. In 16 patients who had positive TST and negative QFT-IT results, TNF antagonists were given without LTBI treatment. Tuberculosis did not occur, even in these patients, during a median of 24.5 months (range, 15-33.5 months) of TNF antagonist therapy. IGRA may be used instead of TST for the diagnosis of LTBI in patients before starting TNF antagonists in countries where tuberculosis prevalence is intermediate and the BCG vaccination is mandatory at birth, such as in Korea.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"