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Lijec Vjesn. 2011 Nov-Dec;133(11-12):396-402.

[Comparison of new and old tests for the diagnosis of latent tuberculosis infection (quantiferon and TST)].

[Article in Croatian]

Author information

KB Merkur, Sveucilista klinika "Vuk Vrhovac", Zagreb.


Tuberculosis (TB) is the second most common contagious disease, caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis). Besides a rare laryngeal tuberculosis, pulmonary tuberculosis is the only one contagious form of the disease, although it can affect any organ of the human body. TB represents a new challenge to the doctors because it appears with numerous chronic diseases, affects immunocompromised hosts, elderly people and because nonadequate therapy could create drug resistant tuberculosis. Early diagnosis of TB is fundamental for every tuberculosis control program. Before 2001 when QuantiFERON test was approved, tuberculin skin test (TST) was the only diagnostic test for detection of latent M. tuberculosis infection. In contrast of TST, which is in vivo test, the novel whole blood tests in vitro, so-called IGRA tests (QuantiFERON, Elispot.T-SPOT.TB) now exist. This paper presents advantages and disadvantages of both methods. IGRA tests are considered to have higher specifity and sensitivity than TST.

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