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A Nosocomial Outbreak of Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis

Thomas A. Kenyon, MD, MPH; Renee Ridzon, MD; Roberta Luskin-Hawk, MD; Carol Schultz, RN; William S. Paul, MD, MPH; Sarah E. Valway, DMD, MPH; Ida M. Onorato, MD; and Kenneth Castro, MD
[+] Article and Author Information

From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atianta, Georgia; and St. Joseph Hospital and the Chicago Department of Public Health, Chicago, Illinois. Acknowledgments: The authors thank the staff of the Chicago Tuberculosis Control Program, particularly Ms. Carla Lee, and the physicians of the exposed patients for their assistance and support. They also thank Mr. Tony Thompson of the Illinois Department of Public Health and Ms. Laura Mosher and Mr. Stephen Dietrich of the Michigan Department of Public Health for assistance with laboratory aspects of the investigation and Dr. Jennifer Lightdale for assistance with data collection. Grant Support: In part by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, St. Joseph Hospital, and the Chicago Department of Public Health. Requests for Reprints: Dr. Renee Ridzon, Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road, MS E-10, Atlanta, GA 30333. Current Author Addresses: Dr. Kenyon: American Embassy, Gaborone, Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-2170.


Copyright ©2004 by the American College of Physicians


Ann Intern Med. 1997;127(1):32-36. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-127-1-199707010-00006
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Background: An outbreak of seven cases (in six patients and one health care worker, all of whom had AIDS) of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis occurred in a hospital in Chicago. The hospital had a respirator-fit testing program but no acid-fast bacilli isolation rooms.

Objective: To identify risk factors for transmission of Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

Design: Retrospective cohort study.

Setting: Private hospital.

Participants: Patients and health care workers exposed to M. tuberculosis.

Measurements: Analysis of M. tuberculosis isolates, tuberculin skin testing, assessment of exposure, and assessment of participant characteristics.

Results: All seven M. tuberculosis isolates had matching DNA fingerprints. Of patients exposed to M. tuberculosis, those who developed tuberculosis had lower CD4+ T-lymphocyte counts (P = 0.02) and were more likely to be ambulatory (P = 0.03) than those who did not. Of 74 exposed health care workers, the 11 (15%) who had conversion on tuberculin skin testing were no more likely than those who did not have conversion to report that they always wore a respirator with a high-efficiency particulate air filter.

Conclusions: Transmission of M. tuberculosis occurred in a hospital that did not have recommended isolation rooms. A respirator-fit testing program did not protect health care workers in this setting.

Figures

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 1.
Timeline demonstrating two chains of nosocomial transmission of tuberculous organisms between August 1994 and September 1995 in a hospital in Chicago.
Grahic Jump Location

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