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Tuberculosis

PPD test negative, but have redness

09/06/2007

Question:

I had a ppd test two days ago. I bled quite a bit from the injection site and the area steadily grew pinkish almost like a rash no larger than the size of my pink (less than or equal to 10 mm).

The site was checked today and no "bump" was detectable, hence, a negative ppd was declared.

I do have sensitive skin. This is the second time I have had this happen over the course of 10 years. I get a red reaction to the injection with no sign of a bump, even at the injection site.

If this is negative, why might my skin react with a rash around the site? Is there any way to prevent this on future tests if this is an allergy to preservatives or such?

Answer:

I am not aware of any means of preventing the redness without induration that some people experience after placement of tuberculin skin tests. Some people believe that one of the tuberculin skin testing products available in the US is more likely than the other product is to cause “allergic” reactions. In the future, you may have the option to ask to have a blood sample drawn for tuberculosis screening instead of placement of a skin test.

For more information:

Go to the Tuberculosis health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Lisa A Haglund, MD Lisa A Haglund, MD
Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati