Laboratory diagnosis of tuberculosis in a large pediatric hospital in Cambodia

SETTING: Tuberculosis laboratory in the Jayavarman VII Children's Hospital in Siem Reap, part of the Kantha Bopha Hospitals, the largest pediatric hospital complex in Cambodia.
OBJECTIVE: To determine the efficiency of on-site microscopy and rRNA amplification in children with a clinical diagnosis of tuberculosis (TB) and specimen sampling for culture.
RESULTS: From 1 July 2005 to 31 March 2006, 52 400 children were admitted to the hospital. Among these, 405 children had tuberculosis, including 91 (22.5%) laboratory-confirmed cases, or respectively 7.7 and 1.7 per 1000 admissions. Among cases confirmed by microscopy or rRNA assay, rRNA identified 91.2%. Among all culture-confirmed cases, rRNA identified 90.5%. Culture alone contributed 7.1% to all laboratory confirmed cases. The yield of culture from preserved specimens was not affected by shipment delay. For 97.4% of the children, the maximum turnaround time for the on-site laboratory result was 48 h.
CONCLUSION: Implementation of a mycobacteriology service in a referral hospital is feasible, as the molecular technique is highly efficient. Storage of specimen aliquots allows subsequent culture without loss of viability due to shipment delay.

Document's year of publication: 2011-2015

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