Effect of duration of cough (≥3 weeks Vs ≥2 weeks) on yield of sputum positive tuberculosis cases and laboratory load
Nimbarte, S.B.; Deshmukh, P.R.; Mehendale, A.M. and Garg, B.S. (2009) Effect of duration of cough (≥3 weeks Vs ≥2 weeks) on yield of sputum positive tuberculosis cases and laboratory load. Online Journal of Health andAllied Sciences, 8 (2). ISSN 0972-5997
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Background & objective: Early detection and prompt treatment is the basis of tuberculosis control through reducing the reservoir of infection. The objective of the present study was to study the effect of reducing the screening criteria of chest symptomatics from existing ≥ 3 weeks to ≥ 2 weeks on case detection of smear positive tuberculosis and laboratory load. Methods: The present cross-sectional study was carried out at General Out-Patient Department (GOPD) of Kasturba Hospital, Sewagram. All the chest symptomatics with cough of two weeks or more than two weeks duration attending in GOPD were screened for pulmonary tuberculosis by examining the three sputum smears in designated microscopy center as per RNTCP guidelines. The data was entered and analyzed using epi_info 6.04d. Results: Number of sputum positive cases detected using RNTCP guideline (cough ≥ 3 weeks) for screening the chest symptomatic for AFB was 104. When, the screening guideline was modified from cough ≥ 3 weeks duration to cough ≥ 2 weeks duration, it yielded 138 cases. The yield of sputum positive cases of tuberculosis was increased by 32.7%. This also increased the laboratory load by 54.8%. Conclusion: The modifications of existing screening criteria from cough ≥ 3 weeks to cough ≥ 2 weeks increased the yield of sputum positive cases by 1.3 times and the laboratory (microscopy center) load by 1.5 times.
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