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Transplant Proc. 2006 May;38(4):1083-5.

Posttransplant Mycobacterium tuberculosis disease following liver transplantation and the need for cautious evaluation of Quantiferon TB GOLD results in the transplant setting: a case report.

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Department of Internal Medicine and Medical Specialties, Infectious Diseases Clinic, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Italy.


This report describes a case of pulmonary tuberculosis in a liver transplant patient without a history of previous exposure to Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) complex. Prior to transplantation, the tuberculin skin test was negative and the QuantiFERON-TB Gold (QFT Gold), an interferon gamma-based blood test, was negative before and after transplant including a period beginning on postoperative day 55 when the patient developed a febrile illness with an interstitial infiltrate and pleural effusion that was unresponsive to broad-spectrum antibiotic therapy. Empiric treatment with isoniazid, ethambutol, and levofloxacin resulted in resolution of the clinical symptoms. A sputum culture grew MTB on postoperative day 87. This case illustrates the need for caution when QFT Gold is used as diagnostic tool for latent tuberculosis during the pretransplant assessment. Further studies evaluating the usefulness of QFT Gold and other interferon gamma tests in posttransplantation active infection are warranted.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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