Volume 22, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645


The question of the insensitivity of immediate and delayed skin testing in children was studied with respect to both nutritional status and intensity of infection. Ninety-seven children on the island of St. Lucia, 5 to 11 years of age, with almost equal male: female distribution, all excreting eggs of were tested as follows: qualitative and quantitative stool examinations; anthropometric measurements (height, weight, mid-arm circumference and triceps skinfold thickness); hematocrit; fluorescent antibody test; and skin tests with control material, adult worm antigen (both Puerto Rican and St. Lucian strains), and intermediate strength PPD tuberculin. The anthropometric measurements revealed marginal malnutrition among the children. The overall positive intradermal response rate for each of the two antigens was similar, being 56% for the immediate and 37% for the delayed test. There was no relationship discernible between relative over- and under-nutrition and the skin test responses. A striking and highly significant positive association was revealed, however, between the intensity of infection, as shown by quantitative egg counts, and the sensitivity and extent of both the immediate and delayed skin test reactions.


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