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How can a TB skin test help diagnose tuberculosis?

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A tiny amount of fluid called tuberculin gets injected just below the skin in your forearm. It contains some inactive TB bacteria. You should feel a small prick from the needle.

You'll go back to your doctor 2 or 3 days later, and a health care worker will see if you've had a reaction. If you have a raised, hard bump or there's swelling on your arm, you have a "positive" test. That means TB germs are in your body. But it doesn't necessarily mean you have active tuberculosis disease.

From: How Do I Know If I Have Tuberculosis? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: "Tuberculosis - Diagnosis."

CDC: "Testing for TB Infection," "Diagnosis of Tuberculosis Disease,"  "The Difference Between Latent TB Infection and TB Disease."

UpToDate: "Patient education: Tuberculosis (Beyond the Basics)."

National Jewish Health: "Tuberculosis: Diagnosis."

American Lung Association: "Diagnosing and Treating Tuberculosis."

Reviewed by Minesh Khatri on September 14, 2017

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: "Tuberculosis - Diagnosis."

CDC: "Testing for TB Infection," "Diagnosis of Tuberculosis Disease,"  "The Difference Between Latent TB Infection and TB Disease."

UpToDate: "Patient education: Tuberculosis (Beyond the Basics)."

National Jewish Health: "Tuberculosis: Diagnosis."

American Lung Association: "Diagnosing and Treating Tuberculosis."

Reviewed by Minesh Khatri on September 14, 2017

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How can a TB blood test help diagnose tuberculosis?

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