Tuberculin Skin Test

Chen-Tien Chang

2007 Vol.23 NO.4

Correspondence Author: Chen-Tien Chang


Tuberculin skin test (TST) is used to detect if a person has been infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Its clinical application has been around for almost 100 years. However, the interpretation of TST results has always been under some controversy.
The formulation and manufacturer of tuberculin, techniques of administration, timing and methods of interpretation, as well as experience of interpreting personnel all affect the results of TST. So far, PPD (purified protein derivative) is the only material that can be used for making tuberculin. TST may be most appropriately done with tuberculin of bioequivalence of 5TU PPD-S and injected intradermally by Mantoux method. Meanwhile, interpretation should be done 48 to 72 hours after tuberculin administration. Induration instead of erythema should be used to interpret the result of TST.