Assessment of suspected Tuberculosis cases tested using GeneXpert in Nyandarua County, Kenya, 2021

  • Respiratory Diseases
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Tuberculosis (TB) diagnosis is essential for disease identification and elimination. In 2016, Kenya listed GeneXpert as the preferred first test for TB diagnosis and identification of Rifampicin resistance. This was informed by the need for a fast and efficient diagnosis of presumptive TB cases, especially in children and those living with HIV. This study sought to assess the socio-demographic and clinical characteristics of TB cases tested using GeneXpert.
A retrospective cross-sectional study design was used. A case was defined as any suspected Tuberculosis case screened using GeneXpert® technology in Nyandarua in 2021. Sociodemographic and clinical variables were collected onto an MS-Excel® database. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze the data.
A total of 363 records were analyzed. Female cases were 191 (53%) and 189 (52%) were aged 30–59 years. New presumptive cases were 325 (91%) and 25 (7%) were HIV positive. The median turnaround time (TAT) from sample collection to results release was 4 days (IQR=10–3). Of the suspected cases assessed, 21 (6%) were positive for tuberculosis. Among the positive cases, 17 (81%) were male and 5 (24%) were HIV positive. There was no rifampicin resistance detected in any of the positive cases.
While more females than males sought the test using GeneXpert® technology, the positivity rate was higher among male cases. The median turnaround time was 5 days against the recommended 3 days. We recommend public health communication among the male population on the importance of tuberculosis screening and further health system studies into the cause for delay in the release of test results.

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