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Tuberculin Skin Testing / Mantoux Test

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What is it?

A test that can help show if someone has been exposed to

tuberculosis previously or are currently affected.

Other names include: Mantoux Test, Purified Protein Derivative (PPD),

Tuberculin Skin test (TST) or Tuberculosis (TB) Skin Test

How is it done?

A small amount of tuberculosis protein is injected under the skin, and 48-72 hours after the swelling is measured. Redness and a hard lump are your body's reaction to the antigen protein. This is safe and some people have this test done every year.

Who needs it?

People who are at a high risk of TB exposure (ie. working in a hospital or clinic) or employment purposes or school admission requirements.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is the TST painful?

The TST involves a small needle prick, similar to a regular vaccination. Discomfort is minimal.

Can I return to work immediately after a TST?

Yes, there are usually no restrictions on resuming regular activities after the test.

Are there any side effects associated with TST?

Side effects are generally mild and include redness or swelling at the injection site. Severe reactions are rare but should be reported to your healthcare provider

Can medical conditions affect TST results?

Certain medical conditions (ie. cancer, HIV) may influence TST results. It is important to inform your pharmacist about any medical conditions or health conditions before the test.

Is the TST accurate in detecting TB exposure?

While the TST is a valuable tool, no test is 100% accurate. Positive results indicate exposure, but additional testing such as a chest X ray or sputum test may be required for a definitive diagnosis 

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