Interferon-gamma release assay and Rifampicin therapy for household contacts of tuberculosis

Jann Yuan Wang, Chin Chung Shu, Chih Hsin Lee, Chong Jen Yu, Li Na Lee, Pan Chyr Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: Longitudinal studies in household contacts to identify subgroups at risk of active tuberculosis are lacking. Methods: Household contacts of pulmonary tuberculosis patients were prospectively enrolled to receive chest radiography, sputum studies, and T-SPOT.TB assay at initial visit. Repeat examinations every 6 months for 3 years, and 4-month rifampin preventive therapy for T-SPOT.TB-positive contacts were provided. We investigated factors predicting T-SPOT.TB-positivity and active pulmonary tuberculosis. Results: 583 contacts were enrolled with a follow-up duration of 20.7±9.4 months. 176 (30.2%) were T-SPOT.TB-positive initially and 32 (18.2%) of them received preventive therapy. Old age, living in the same room/house with the index case, the index case having a high smear grade (3+~4+) and pulmonary cavitation were associated with T-SPOT.TB-positivity. Active tuberculosis developed in 9T-SPOT.TB-positive contacts; risk factors included T-SPOT.TB-positivity without preventive therapy, living in the same room, and the index case being ≤50 years or female. 108 (61.4%) T-SPOT.TB-positive contacts had repeat examinations. Forty-five had T-SPOT.TB reversion and none of them developed active tuberculosis. Conclusion: Household contacts who are T-SPOT.TB-positive and live in the same room as the index case are at risk of active tuberculosis and require preventive therapy and close follow-up.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)291-298
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Infection
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Household contact
  • Latent tuberculosis infection
  • Pulmonary tuberculosis
  • Risk factor
  • Taiwan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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