Indian Journal of Pathology and Microbiology
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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 53  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 227-231

Extra-pulmonary tuberculosis in Saudi Arabia

Department of Pathology (Microbiology), King Khalid University Hospital, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Fawzia Al-Otaibi
Microbiology Unit, Department of Pathology / Micropathology (32), College of Medicine and king Saud University, King Khalid University Hospital, PO Box 2925, Riyadh-114 61
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0377-4929.64327

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Studies from developed countries have reported that extra-pulmonary tuberculosis (EPTB) is on the rise due to the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) epidemic. However, similar studies from high-burden countries with low prevalence of HIV like Saudi Arabia are lacking. Therefore, we conducted this study to investigate demographic and clinical characteristics of patients with pulmonary and extra-pulmonary tuberculosis. A retrospective analysis was carried out on all patients (n=431) with a culture - proven diagnosis of tuberculosis seen at University teaching hospital, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia from January 2001 to December 2007. A total of 183 (42.5%) pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB) and 248 (57.5%) extra-pulmonary TB (EPTB) cases were compared in terms of age, sex, and nationality. There were 372 Saudis (SA) (86.3%) and the remaining non-Saudis (NSA) 59 (13.7%). The age distribution of the PTB patients had a bimodal distribution. EPTB was more common at young age (20-29 years). The proportion of EPTB cases was significantly higher among NSA patients (72.9%) compared to SA patients (55.1%). Females had higher proportion (59.5%) of EPTB than males (55.6%). The most common site was lymph node tuberculosis (42%). In conclusion, our data suggest that EPTB was relatively common in younger age, female gender and NSA. Tuberculosis (TB) control program may target those populations for EPTB case-finding.

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