Tuberculosis in human immunodeficiency virus-infected and human immunodeficiency virus-exposed children in New York City

Pauline Thomas, Katherine Bornschlegel, Tejinder Pal Singh, Elaine J. Abrams, Joseph Cervia, Senih Fikrig, Genevieve Lambert, Hermann Mendez, Katherine Kaye, Jeanne Bertolli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Background. Tuberculosis disease incidence increased sharply in New York City (NYC) in the late 1980s in children and adults. The relationship of tuberculosis disease in adults with the coincident epidemic of immunosuppression caused by HIV disease has been well-documented. This paper examines the relationship of tuberculosis and HIV in children in NYC. Methods. Information on tuberculosis was collected by retrospective chart abstraction in a cohort of HIV-exposed and infected children enrolled in a longitudinal study of HIV. Tuberculosis cases were ascertained by chart review or by matching HIV-infected and -exposed children to NYC Tuberculosis Registry cases. NYC Tuberculosis Registry data on children reported from 1989 to 1995, and not reported as HIV-infected, were used for comparison. Results. Tuberculosis disease was found in 45 (3%) of 1426 HIV-infected children (0.61 per 100 child years of observation) and in 5 (0.5%) of 1085 HIV-exposed uninfected children (0.2 per 100 child years). 30% of children were evaluated for HIV only after presenting with tuberculosis. Children with tuberculosis and HIV were more likely than other age-matched HIV-infected children to have decreased CD4+ T lymphocyte counts (66% vs. 37%, P = 0.02) and more likely than other NYC children with tuberculosis to have culture-confirmed and extrapulmonary tuberculosis. In this series 8 of 21 deaths in HIV-infected children with tuberculosis appeared to be related to tuberculosis. Conclusions. During a period of high tuberculosis incidence in NYC, 3% of HIV-infected children in our cohort had tuberculosis, higher than the rate in uninfected children born to HIV-positive mothers in the same cohort. Because of this association, HIV-infected children with pulmonary illness should be tested for tuberculosis; and all children with tuberculosis should be tested for HIV.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)700-706
Number of pages7
JournalPediatric Infectious Disease Journal
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


  • Human immunodeficiency virus infection
  • Pediatric human immunodeficiency virus
  • Tuberculosis


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