Effect of diabetes on tuberculosis presentation and outcomes in Kiribati

Trop Med Int Health. 2015 May;20(5):643-649. doi: 10.1111/tmi.12468. Epub 2015 Feb 18.


Objectives: To determine the association between diabetes and the clinical features and treatment outcomes of TB in Kiribati.

Methods: We enrolled consecutive patients with TB who presented from August 2010 to February 2012 and compared clinical features and TB treatment outcomes for patients with and without diabetes, as measured by haemoglobin A1c assay. Poor outcome was defined as death, default or treatment failure, and good outcome as treatment success or cure.

Results: Two hundred and seventy-five eligible persons with TB disease were enrolled; 101 (37%) had diabetes. TB patients with diabetes were more likely to have acid-fast bacilli (AFB) seen on sputum smear microscopy (RR: 1.3; 95% CI: 1.03-1.62). The risk of poor outcome did not differ between patients with or without diabetes (RR: 1.1; 95% CI: 0.5-2.7).

Conclusion: TB patients with diabetes are more likely than those without to have sputum with AFB on microscopy. This could increase transmission in the community. Early detection of TB by screening patients with diabetes, and the converse, could be important public health interventions where diabetes and TB are prevalent.

Keywords: Pacific; Pacifique; Pacífico; Tuberculosis; case-control study; diabetes mellitus; diabète sucré; estudio caso-control; resultados de tratamiento; résultats du traitement; treatment outcomes; tuberculose; étude cas-témoins.