When TB patients are not diagnosed and cured quickly, they may unknowingly spread their infection to their families and communities – further exacerbating the epidemic.
According to Dr. Madukhar Pai, Associate Director of the McGill International Tuberculosis Centre, without early and better TB diagnosis, we are unlikely to achieve TB elimination.
Most high-TB-burden countries today are still reliant on old sputum smear microscopy for diagnosis. And while this is inexpensive and easy to implement, it has drawbacks such as the inability to detect drug resistant strains of TB. According to Dr. Pai, an ideal TB test will have high sensitivity and specificity, and will produce results rapidly. It also need to be simple to implement and cost-effective.
Dr. Madhukar Pai is a keynote speaker at next week’s TB conference in Vancouver. In addition to his role as Associate Director of the McGill International Tuberculosis Centre, he is associate professor of epidemiology at McGill University; Director of Global Health Programs and consults for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Read more of Dr. Pai’s insights here: http://www.news-medical.net/news/20130215/Improving-tuberculosis-(TB)-diagnosis-an-interview-with-Professor-Madhukar-Pai-MD-PhD.aspx and here: http://www.tbonline.info/media/uploads/documents/transforming_the_diagnosis_of_tuberculosis_-_an_editorial_board_member%E2%80%99s_opinion_at_the_15th_year_of_expert_review_of_molecular_diagnostics.pdf
The BC Lung Association serves as conference secretariat, helping to organize North America’s largest TB conference every year.
TB is the #1 infectious killer in the world. It’s a disease we can diagnose, treat and cure and yet of 10.4 diagnosed each year, 1.5 million die.