Volume 101, Issue 6
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



A negative interferon-γ release assay (IGRA) result might inappropriately lower the clinical suspicion for childhood tuberculosis (TB) and result in delayed treatment initiation. However, the risk factors associated with false-negative IGRA results in children remain unclear. Between May 2012 and January 2018, 156 culture-confirmed childhood TB patients who had received T-SPOT.TB test were included. Data, including demographic information and clinicopathological variables, were collected via questionnaires. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to estimate the odds ratio (OR) and corresponding 95% CI of risk factors associated with false-negative T-SPOT.TB results. The positive rate of T-SPOT.TB test was 85.9% in childhood TB patients. Multivariate analysis revealed that younger age (≤ 9 years; OR = 4.782; 95% CI: 1.689, 13.539), weight for age (-score > 0.37; OR = 4.256; 95% CI: 1.458, 12.428), and hypoproteinemia (total protein ≤ 68.4 g/L; OR = 7.131; 95% CI: 1.864, 27.271) were risk factors for false-negative T-SPOT.TB results in childhood TB. Younger age, overweight, and hypoproteinemia were found to be associated with false-negative T-SPOT.TB results in childhood TB. Health care professionals should consider these risk factors when evaluating suspected childhood TB with negative T-SPOT.TB results.


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  • Received : 20 Aug 2018
  • Accepted : 25 Sep 2019
  • Published online : 28 Oct 2019
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