Female doctor talking to older male patient
TB Management


WHO recommends testing patients with weakened immune systems for TB infection.

Overall, about 5–10% of people with latent TB infection will develop active TB disease at some time in their lives. The risk of active TB is greater in people suffering from conditions that impair the immune system.

  • People who are infected with HIV are 16 times more likely to develop active TB (1).
  • TB is the leading cause of death among HIV-infected patients (2).

Let’s see how systematic latent TB testing and treatment can prevent the progression of latent TB to TB disease in immunocompromised patients.

As a result of immunosuppression, people living with HIV are at increased risk for TB, and reliable surveillance is critical to protect their health.

Thus, timely diagnosis and early treatment are vital to preventing its progression to disease. The WHO recommends systematic latent TB testing and treatment for all persons living with HIV – regardless of country incidence or income (4).

Patients with weakened immune systems should be tested for latent TB infection (4).

QuantiFERON TB testing employs a simple blood test (IGRA) to aid in the detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. In its Global Tuberculosis Report 2020, the WHO concludes that its previously endorsed QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus (QFT-Plus) test is one of only two commercially available IGRAs that may be used for testing latent TB infection (4).

QFT-Plus can provide highly accurate detection of TB infection for immunocompromised patients in a single patient visit. It is unaffected by BCG vaccination, features innovative CD8 T cell technology and offers >94% sensitivity and >97% specificity.

QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus tubes
Reduce the risk of active TB in immunocompromised patients
QFT-Plus is the modern alternative to the tuberculin skin test.
  1. World Health Organization. (2022) WHO Tuberculosis Key Facts. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/tuberculosis (accessed January 15, 2023)
  2. Machuca, I., Vidal, E., de la Torre-Cisneros, J., Rivero-Román, A. (2018). Tuberculosis in immunosuppressed patients. Enferm Infecc Microbiol Clin. 36(6), 366–374.
  3. Lobue, P. and Menzies, D. (2010) Treatment of latent tuberculosis infection: An update. Respirology. 15, 603.
  4. World Health Organization. (2020) WHO consolidated guidelines on tuberculosis: tuberculosis preventive treatment. https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/who-consolidated-guidelines-ontuberculosis-module-1-prevention-tuberculosis-preventive-treatment

QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus (QFT-Plus) is an in vitro diagnostic aid for detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. QFT-Plus is an indirect test for M. tuberculosis infection (including disease) and is intended for use in conjunction with risk assessment, radiography, and other medical and diagnostic evaluations.