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Postgrad Med. 2018 Sep;130(7):637-643. doi: 10.1080/00325481.2018.1510709. Epub 2018 Aug 22.

Risk factors for latent tuberculosis infection in children in South Korea.

Author information

1
a Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine , The Catholic University of Korea , Seoul , Republic of Korea.
2
b Department of Pediatrics, St. Paul's Hospital, College of Medicine , The Catholic University of Korea , Seoul , Republic of Korea.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

In South Korea, latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) screening is a critical strategy associated with efforts to reduce the incidence of tuberculosis (TB). Currently, only children with a known history of TB contact are considered as pediatric high-risk groups for LTBI, and consequently, LTBI screening is only provided to these children. However, to reduce the incidence of TB, the high-risk groups that undergo LTBI screening should be expanded. This study aimed to assess the risk factors for LTBI among children living in South Korea with no known history of TB contact for the identification of additional high-risk groups. We investigated the risk factors for LTBI among US visa applicant children, who undergo LTBI screening regardless of their TB contact history.

METHODS:

We obtained data on demographic characteristics, medical history, Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccination history, and results of LTBI screening for children aged 2-14 years. A tuberculin skin test was used for the diagnosis of LTBI, and an induration of 10 mm or greater was used to define a positive test. Adjusted odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were calculated to determine the association between clinical and demographic variables and LTBI.

RESULTS:

Of the 1,664 study participants, 91 (5.5%) had LTBI. The binary logistic regression analysis showed that children born in high TB burden foreign countries had the highest odds of LTBI when considering all the risk factors investigated. Increasing age, absence of BCG vaccination, and a previous diagnosis of asthma were also significant risk factors for LTBI.

CONCLUSION:

These results indicate that children born in high TB burden foreign countries should be considered a high-risk group for LTBI in South Korea; the inclusion of these children in LTBI screening should be considered.

KEYWORDS:

Bacillus Calmette–Guerin vaccination; Latent tuberculosis infection; South Korea; asthma; children; foreign born; risk factor

PMID:
30095331
DOI:
10.1080/00325481.2018.1510709
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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