Date: 11 Nov 2012

Gastric aspiration is not necessary for the diagnosis of pulmonary tuberculosis

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Abstract

Despite recommendations, gastric aspirate collected by invasive nasogastric aspiration is still routinely used for the direct detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in our institution. Reviewing 82 patients with culture-proven respiratory tuberculosis over a 28-month period, we observed no patient diagnosed solely by gastric aspirate analysis. Moreover, the diagnosis yield of gastric aspirate (60 %) did not significantly differ from that of stool specimen (64 %). These data confirm that gastric aspirate is no longer useful for the diagnosis of respiratory tuberculosis contrary to stool specimen.