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Author(s): Ramos, S
Nogueira, A
Dias, A
Gonçalves, AF
Gaio, AR
Duarte, R
Title: Tuberculosis screening in patients receiving biological therapy
Issue Date: 2015
Abstract: AIM: Biological therapies are a risk factor for tuberculosis (TB). Portuguese recommendations recommend universal baseline screening for TB before starting biologics (2006) and annually thereafter if screened negative (2012 update). The gain with re-screening remains unknown. We aimed to i)identify the risk of latent TB infection at baseline screening among patients candidates to initiate biologics ii)present follow-up results for patients receiving different biological therapies and analyse intolerance or toxicity related to preventive therapy, conversions of immunodiagnostic tests under biological therapy and development of active TB. METHODS: Patients screened for TB at a reference centre before starting biological therapy between 2008-2012 were identified. Medical files were retrospectively reviewed. Demographic data, screening and follow-up results and information on biological therapy were collected. EXCLUSION CRITERIA: unavailable information on initiation of biological therapy. RESULTS: 183 patients were included in the study, with 115 starting biological therapy. The baseline screening was positive in 52(45,2%) patients - 50(96,2%) were proposed for preventive treatment (2 had abnormal liver enzymes). Mild hepatotoxicity occurred in 4(8%) patients without need to interrupt TB prophylaxis. No cases of active TB occurred during follow-up in patients with positive baseline screening. Among the 63(54,8%) patients who screened negative, 2(3,2%) developed active TB (under infliximab and adalimumab) more than one year after initiation of biologics. 26(41,3%) patients were re-screened at the TB centre. 5(19,2%) had tuberculin skin test (TST) conversion and one concomitantly undetermined IGRA. No IGRA conversions were observed. The follow-up period was 4,0 years. TB baseline screening's negative predictive value (NPV) was 96,8% (95%CI: 89,0% to 99.5%). A low rate of re-screening was observed. CONCLUSION: The rate of latent TB at baseline screening was higher than expected. Preventive treatment was well tolerated. No patients with positive baseline screening developed active TB. Efforts should be made to raise awareness concerning the risk of TB exposure, specially considering that the active TB cases were compatible with new infection. The rate of re-screening suggests a low awareness regarding current recommendations Nation-wide studies are necessary to evaluate the efficacy of the re-screening strategy and to clarify what risk groups most benefit from it.
Subject: Tuberculosis - Screening
Biological therapy
Source: Acta Reumatol Port, vol. 40(3), p. 234-240
Document Type: Artigo em Revista Científica Nacional
Rights: openAccess
Appears in Collections:ISPUP - Artigo em Revista Científica Nacional

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