Impact of tuberculosis control measures and crowding on the incidence of tuberculous infection in Maryland prisons

C. Raina MacIntyre, Newton Kendig, Leslie Kummer, Susan Birago, Neil M.H. Graham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Our aim was to determine the incidence of tuberculin skin test (TST) conversion in the Maryland state correctional system. We conducted a historical longitudinal cohort study. A sample of 1,289 inmates, incarcerated in 16 of 23 prisons, who had a negative TST and a second test within 24 months was selected. The incidence of recent conversion was 6.3 per 100 person-years. Risk factors for conversion included high prison-population density (relative risk [RR] = 2.4; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.5-3.8) and incarceration in a higher-security institution (RR = 2.4; 95% CI, 1.4-4.3). Incarceration in an institution with higher levels of isoniazid prophylaxis (>65% of TST positives) reduced the risk of infection by 50% (RR = 0.5; 95% CI, 0.3-0.7). Crowding was strongly correlated with risk of conversion (r = 0.83; P < .001), while rates of isoniazid prophylaxis initiation were inversely correlated with risk of infection (r = -0.82; P < .001). In stepwise regression, higher prison-population density was the strongest predictor of increased infection. In a final model, inclusion of the rate of isoniazid prophylaxis initiation reduced the risk associated with crowding (RR = 1.4; P = .4). Annual screening programs for prisons can identify recent conversions that may not otherwise be detected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1060-1067
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Volume24
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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