Zinc cream and reliability of tuberculosis skin testing

V. Bhargavi Rao, Tom F. Pelly, Robert H. Gilman, Lilia Cabrera, Jose Delgado, Giselle Soto, Jon S. Friedland, A. Roderick Escombe, Robert E. Black, Carlton A. Evans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In 50 healthy Peruvian shantytown residents, zinc cream applied to tuberculosis skin-test sites caused a 32% increase in induration compared with placebo cream. Persons with lower plasma zinc had smaller skin-test reactions and greater augmentation with zinc cream. Zinc deficiency caused false-negative skin-test results, and topical zinc supplementation augmented antimycobacterial immune responses enough to improve diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1101-1104
Number of pages4
JournalEmerging infectious diseases
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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