Background Contact tracing, to identify source cases with untreated tuberculosis (TB), is rarely performed in high disease burden settings when the index case is a young child with TB. As TB is strongly associated with HIV infection in these settings, we used source case investigation to determine the prevalence of undiagnosed TB and HIV in the caregivers and household contacts of hospitalised young children diagnosed with TB in South Africa. Methods Caregivers and household contacts of 576 young children (age ≤7 years) with TB diagnosed between May 2010 and August 2012 were screened for TB and HIV. The primary outcome was the detection of laboratory-confirmed, newly-diagnosed TB disease and/or HIV-infection in close contacts. Results Of 576 caregivers, 301 (52·3%) self-reported HIV-positivity. Newly-diagnosed HIV infection was detected in 63 (22·9%) of the remaining 275 caregivers who self-reported an unknown or negative HIV status. Screening identified 133 (23·1%) caregivers eligible for immediate anti-retroviral therapy (ART). Newly-diagnosed TB disease was detected in 23 (4·0%) caregivers. In non-caregiver household contacts (n = 1341), the prevalence of newly-diagnosed HIV infection and TB disease was 10·0% and 3·2% respectively. On average, screening contacts of every nine children with TB resulted in the identification of one case of newlydiagnosed TB disease, three cases of newly diagnosed HIV-infection, and three HIVinfected persons eligible for ART. Conclusion In high burden countries, source case investigation yields high rates of previously undiagnosed HIV and TB infection in the close contacts of hospitalised young children diagnosed with TB. Furthermore, integrated screening identifies many individuals who are eligible for immediate ART. Similar studies, with costing analyses, should be undertaken in other high burden settings-integrated source case investigation for TB and HIV should be routinely undertaken if our findings are confirmed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)