Latente Tuberkuloseinfektion (LTBI) bei medizinischem Personal nach Auslandseinsätzen [Latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) among medical personnel after foreign assignments]


  • I. Meier
  • A. Schablon
  • A. Nienhaus
  • S. Konigorski


  • Pneumologie


  • Pneumologie


  • INTRODUCTION: Every year, medical personnel are sent abroad via relief organisations in order to provide humanitarian aid. The areas they are sent to are often countries with a high incidence of tuberculosis. The prevalence of latent tuberculosis infections (LTBI) and associated risk factors among returnees in Germany have not yet been systematically investigated. METHODS: In a cross-sectional study (N = 95), medical personnel in Germany who had completed at least one foreign assignment were tested for LTBI with the Interferon-Gamma Release Assay in order to examine the LTBI prevalence among them. Relevant risk factors were assessed using a questionnaire. Statistical evaluation was carried out using cross-tables and multiple logistic regression. RESULTS: The LTBI prevalence in our sample was 12.63 %, 95 %CI (7.70 %; 23.89 %). The odds of LTBI increased with age (OR = 1.06, 95 %CI [1.01; 1.12], p-value = 0.021, per one life-year) and length of stay abroad (OR = 1.11, 95 %CI [1.03; 1.21], p-value = 0.009, per month). DISCUSSION: The study showed a higher LTBI prevalence among returnees after assignments abroad than among medical personnel in Germany after TB contact who had been investigated in previous studies. In order to be able to detect LTBI infections acquired abroad, routine testing before and after an assignment abroad seems to be necessary.