TB (Tuberculosis) Skin Testing (TST)
The Tuberculin Skin Test is a test to see if a person has been infected with TB bacteria. A small amount of liquid (called tuberculin) is injected under the skin on the forearm. This produces a small bump that gradually disappears. The individual being tested must return in 48 – 72 hours to have the area checked for a reaction for the test to be considered complete. Testing is available on Tuesdays by appointment only. (765) 659-6385 ext. 1309. The cost is $20.00 which includes 1 record of the results. Cash, check, debit, or credit card accepted.
Almost anyone can be tested using this method, including infants, children, pregnant women, individuals living with HIV, and those who have had the BCG vaccine. People who have had a severe reaction to a previous TST should not receive another TST.
All Positive Reactions Require Further Follow-up with a Physician.
What is TB and how is it spread?
Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease that is spread through the air from one person to another. When someone who is sick with TB coughs, speaks, laughs, sings, or sneezes, people nearby may breathe TB bacteria into their lungs. TB usually attacks the lungs but can also attack other parts of the body. Additional information is available at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website https://www.cdc.gov/tb/.
There are Three Classifications of TB
- Latent TB Infection: This occurs when TB bacteria live in a person’s body but do not make them sick. They have no symptoms and they cannot spread TB bacteria to others.
- TB Disease or Active TB: People with TB disease feel sick and can spread TB bacteria to others. Symptoms include fever, night sweats, prolonged cough, and weight loss. Individuals who have Latent TB can go on to develop TB disease.
- Presumptive TB: Refers to a patient who presents with symptoms or signs suggestive of TB.
Both Latent and Active TB must be reported to the Indiana State Department of Health. For more information or for forms to report a TB case, visit https://www.in.gov/isdh/19662.htm.
- Is there times when the PPD/TB skin test should NOT be administered?
- If you have had a positive PPD skin test in the past.
- If you have been treated with medication for latent or active TB in the past.
- If you are currently taking any immune-suppressants or steroid medications, such as prednisone, Embrel, anti-rejection or anti-cancer drugs.
- If you have received vaccines for measles, chicken pox, shingles, oral typhoid or yellow fever in the past 4 – 6 weeks.
- Lastly, if you have had a blood test for TB (Quantiferon Gold) or IGRA and the results were positive.
- What if my PPD test results are positive?
You will be referred to a physician for follow-up and treatment.