Send to

Choose Destination
Am Rev Respir Dis. 1993 Jul;148(1):235-6.

Focusing tuberculosis contact tracing by smear grading of index cases.

Author information

Department of Diseases of the Chest, Turku University Central Hospital, Preitilรค, Finland.


Several studies have confirmed that the contacts of sputum-smear-positive patients are a high risk group. We made a prospective survey to investigate the contacts of infectious cases of pulmonary tuberculosis in order to evaluate whether different grades of sputum-smear positivity have any consequence in the emergence of new cases. The number of contacts reported by 134 index cases was 609. These included 136 (22%) who had been in close contact to the index case, 69 of them to patients heavily positive by sputum smear. Tracing of 609 contacts over 2 yr revealed four (0.7%) new cases of active tuberculosis. All of them were close contacts, and, moreover, all four (5.8%) belonged to the group of 69 whose index case had a heavily positive sputum smear. This was significantly more than in other contacts, p = 0.0002. To be productive, tracing should be limited to close contacts of heavily smear-positive patients. This seems also to be the group in which chemoprophylaxis could be cost-effectively focused.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon
Loading ...
Support Center