Author(s): Wang JY, Hsueh PR, Wang SK, Jan IS, Lee LN,
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Abstract Disseminated tuberculosis remains a diagnostic challenge because the presentations are nonspecific. In the current retrospective study we describe the clinical characteristics and outcome of disseminated tuberculosis. From January 1995 to December 2004, patients with culture-confirmed tuberculosis who fulfilled the criteria for disseminated tuberculosis were selected and their medical records reviewed. Their clinical isolates were genotyped. Of the 3058 patients with culture-confirmed tuberculosis, 164 (5.4\%) had disseminated disease; 14.0\% of patients had acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. The most common radiographic finding was miliary lung lesions (47.0\%); 31.1\% of patients died at the end of the study. Poor prognostic factors included hypoalbuminemia, hyperbilirubinemia, renal insufficiency, and delayed antituberculosis treatment. Clinical findings suggestive of disseminated tuberculosis were miliary lung lesions, serum ferritin >1000 microg/L, infiltrative liver disease, and adjusted calcium >2.6 mmol/L. Simultaneously performing mycobacterial culture and histopathologic examination of bone marrow biopsy was more sensitive and faster than just performing mycobacterial blood culture in diagnosing disseminated tuberculosis. Of the 64 preserved Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates, 47 (73.4\%) were clustered and 27 (42.2\%) were Beijing family. Since prognosis was worse in patients with delayed treatment, a high index of suspicion is required, especially in those with clinical findings suggestive of disseminated tuberculosis.
This article was published in Medicine (Baltimore)
and referenced in Mycobacterial Diseases