Journal Article

Risk Factors Associated with Tuberculin Skin Test Positivity among University Students and the Use of Such Factors in the Development of a Targeted Screening Program

Venkatarama Rao Koppaka, Eric Harvey, Beth Mertz and Betty Anne Johnson

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 36, issue 5, pages 599-607
Published in print March 2003 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online March 2003 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/367664
Risk Factors Associated with Tuberculin Skin Test Positivity among University Students and the Use of Such Factors in the Development of a Targeted Screening Program

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The present study evaluated the accuracy of a risk assessment questionnaire (RAQ) for identifying candidates for tuberculin testing. A 33-question RAQ was administered to students before they underwent tuberculin screening at Virginia Commonwealth University (Richmond). Test operating characteristics for the complete and abbreviated RAQs compared to tuberculin skin test (TST) results were determined. Of 5382 students screened, 125 (2.3%) had a positive TST result; 113 (90.4%) of these 125 students had ⩾1 affirmative response on the RAQ (i.e., a “positive RAQ”). The prevalence of TST positivity among students not born in the United States was 33.2-fold higher than that among students born in the United States. A 2-question RAQ had a sensitivity of 81.6%, a specificity of 91.0%, and positive and negative predictive values of 17.7% and 99.5%, respectively. Risk assessment can be an accurate means of identifying candidates for tuberculin screening.

Journal Article.  4811 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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