Are you wondering what the difference is between a positive and negative TB skin test? A positive TB skin test means that you have been exposed to tuberculosis at some point in your life and have developed an immunity to it. A negative TB skin test means that you have not been exposed to tuberculosis and do not have immunity to it. If you are thinking about getting a TB skin test, it is important to understand the difference between the two so that you can make an informed decision.
What is a Positive TB Skin Test?
A positive TB skin test means that a person has been infected with the bacteria that cause tuberculosis (TB). However, it does not necessarily mean that the person has active TB disease. It is estimated that up to 13 million people in the United States have latent TB infection, which means they are infected with the bacteria but do not have active TB disease. People with latent TB infection do not feel sick and cannot spread TB bacteria to others. However, if the latent infection becomes active, it can progress to TB disease. Symptoms of active TB disease include cough, chest pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, weight loss, appetite loss, chills, fever, and night sweats. If left untreated, TB disease can be fatal. Therefore, it is important for people who have tested positive for TB to receive treatment as soon as possible. The good news is that TB is treatable and curable. With proper treatment, most people with active TB disease will make a full recovery.
What is a Negative TB Skin Test?
A negative TB skin test means that you do not have tuberculosis. A positive TB skin test means that you may have tuberculosis. This is because your body is reacting to the bacteria that cause tuberculosis. But it does not mean that you have active tuberculosis. People who have latent tuberculosis infection do not feel sick and cannot spread the disease to others. About one-quarter of the world’s population has latent tuberculosis infection. The vast majority of people with latent infection never develop active disease. In people with a weakened immune system, however, such as those with HIV/AIDS, the risk of progression from latent to active disease is much higher. If you have a positive TB skin test, you will need to have a chest x-ray to see if you have active tuberculosis.
Difference between Positive TB Skin Test and Negative TB Skin Test
A positive TB skin test means that an individual was infected with TB bacteria. This usually happens when the person inhales TB bacteria from the air. The bacteria will then multiply in their lungs and lymph nodes and cause symptoms such as a cough, fever, and chest pain. A negative TB skin test means that an individual does not currently have a TB infection and is not contagious. However, they may still be at risk of developing active TB disease if they come in contact with someone who has TB infection. It is important to get a medical evaluation if you have been exposed to someone with active TB disease or if you have any symptoms of TB infection.
Positive tuberculosis (TB) skin test means that you have been infected with the TB bacteria at some point in your life. A negative TB skin test means that you have not been infected with the bacteria and are therefore not immune to it. If you are thinking about traveling to a country where TB is common, it is important to know whether or not you have immunity to the disease. A positive skin test result does not mean that you will definitely develop tuberculosis; it just means that you are more likely to get the disease if exposed to it. If you are planning on traveling, be sure to discuss your travel plans with your doctor so that they can help you make decisions about getting vaccinated against TB.