Controversies in tuberculous infection among pediatric infectious disease specialists in North America

A. T. Cruz, A. L. Hersh, J. R. Starke, S. E. Beekmann, P. M. Polgreen, R. Banerjee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the extent to which advancements in the diagnosis and treatment of latent tuberculous infection (LTBI) have been integrated into practice by pediatric infectious disease (PID) specialists. DESIGN: We conducted an online survey of the Infectious Diseases Society of America's Emerging Infections Network (EIN) membership. RESULTS: Of the 323 members, 197 (61%) responded: 7% cared for ≥5 children with TB disease and 34% for ≥5 children with LTBI annually. We identified substantial variations in the use of interferon-gamma release assays (IGRAs) based upon age, immune status, and TB risk factors. In addition, tuberculin skin test (TST) use was three times more common in younger children. Variations existed in managing children with discordant TST and IGRA results. Less variation existed in LTBI treatment, with 86% preferring a 9-month course of isoniazid; few other, newer regimens were used routinely. CONCLUSION: Substantial variations exist in LTBI management; uptake of newer diagnostic tools and treatment regimens has been slow. Variations in practice and the lag time to integrating new data into practice may indicate the relative infrequency with which providers encounter LTBI. Our findings reflect the need for increased visibility of existing TB guidelines and resources for expert consultation for scenarios not covered by guidelines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1463-1468
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016


  • Interferon-gamma release assay (IGRA)
  • Practice variation
  • Treatment regimens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Infectious Diseases


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