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Med Mal Infect. 2015 Oct;45(10):411-3. doi: 10.1016/j.medmal.2015.09.001. Epub 2015 Sep 26.

Sputum smear-positive pulmonary tuberculosis: Is sputum smear examination required to discontinue airborne precautions?

Author information

1
Maladies infectieuses et tropicales, nouvel hôpital civil, 67000 Strasbourg, France. Electronic address: xavier_argemi@hotmail.com.
2
Laboratoire de microbiologie, nouvel hôpital civil, 67000 Strasbourg, France.
3
Maladies infectieuses et tropicales, nouvel hôpital civil, 67000 Strasbourg, France.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Our aim was to evaluate the criteria required to discontinue airborne precautions for patients presenting with sputum smear-positive pulmonary tuberculosis as the need for sputum smear examinations is still a matter of debate.

METHOD:

We conducted a retrospective study in the University Hospitals of Strasbourg (France) from July 2011 to July 2013. Our aim was to describe the results of sputum smear examinations and cultures obtained from treated patients presenting with drug-sensitive pulmonary tuberculosis. We included 97 patients in the study.

CONCLUSION:

Nearly half of patients for whom a sputum smear examination was performed had a negative sputum direct examination but a positive culture. According to the literature, those patients are still likely to be contagious. This questions the safety of discontinuing airborne precautions in this situation. We also observed a great disparity in physicians' behaviors. Only half of them waited to get a negative sputum direct examination before discontinuing airborne precautions.

KEYWORDS:

Airborne precautions; Contrôle des expectorations; Isolement respiratoire; Sputum smear examination; Tuberculose; Tuberculosis

PMID:
26415626
DOI:
10.1016/j.medmal.2015.09.001
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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