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Primary Tuberculosis from the Far East: Transmission by a Veteran to Two Civilians

WILLIAM W. STEAD, M.D., F.A.C.P.; and JOSEPH H. BATES, M.D.
Ann Intern Med. 1969;70(4):707-711. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-70-4-707
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SUMMARY:

A case of tuberculosis is described which appears to have been the result of infection acquired while a soldier was serving in the Far East. Two secondary cases are described and the evidence presented that they represented infection acquired from this soldier after his return to civilian life. The Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolated from two of the three patients was of phage type A, which is the predominant type in the Orient. The clinical evidence indicated that the two secondary cases represented progressive primary infection that corresponded in time to the exposure of these patients to the veteran while his disease was developing and progressing. The implications for the public health and efforts at eradication of tuberculosis in the United States are discussed.

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