In 2015, the World Health Organization recommended a urine test that helps with the detection of tuberculosis (TB) in people living with HIV who are hospitalised or who have compromised immune systems. While uptake of this test in South Africa was initially quite slow, numbers presented at the recent South African TB Conference suggest that the use of the test is now increasing. Tiyese Jeranji reports.
Tuberculosis can be challenging to diagnose in children, especially very young children. This is because it is difficult for them to cough up the sputum required by gold standard molecular tests and because they have fewer TB organisms in their sputum than adults. X-ray screening may be part of the solution, but it has shortcomings. Following some interesting recent study findings, Tiyese Jeranji asks what role lung ultrasound may have in improving TB detection in kids.
Roughly two in five people newly ill with TB worldwide are never diagnosed. In South Africa, this amounts to about 120 000 to 160 000 people per year. A large new study called XACT III is testing ways in which more people can be diagnosed and started on TB treatment more quickly. Tiyese Jeranji reports.
After various delays and setbacks, a new, less toxic, short-course tuberculosis preventive therapy called 3HP is finally being launched in six districts in South Africa. Tiyese Jeranji reports.
South Africa’s first National Tuberculosis Prevalence Survey found that many people without TB symptoms nevertheless have TB disease that can be detected using chest X-rays. Accordingly, new mobile X-ray screening programmes are being piloted in a number of provinces. Tiyese Jeranji reports.
Over 150 000 people who had TB in South Africa in 2018 were not diagnosed, according to findings from South Africa’s long-awaited National Tuberculosis Prevalence Survey. One reason for this is that an unexpectedly high number of people do not show the typical TB symptoms and are never x-rayed. Amy Green reports.
New World Health Organization guidance released this week endorses the wider use of chest X-rays and artificial intelligence for tuberculosis detection. Before these technologies can be fully utilised in South Africa, some regulatory and other issues will first have to be sorted out. Catherine Tomlinson reports.
Three years ago, public sector cancer services made headlines for failing patients in multiple provinces. A few government interventions later, experts say there have been improvements, but significant issues remain. Elna Schütz reports.