Tuberculosis in pregnancy--implications for antenatal screening in Australia

Med J Aust. 1987 Jan 5;146(1):42-4.


Two cases of tuberculosis have been seen over the past two years in southeast Asian women who had recently emigrated to Australia and who attended a single maternity hospital in Brisbane. One patient died of tuberculous meningitis and the other had an asymptomatic tuberculous pleural effusion. Both cases illustrate some of the difficulties in the diagnosis of extrapulmonary tuberculosis, particularly in pregnant women, and the low level of awareness of this condition. Antenatal screening for tuberculosis is not performed as a routine in Australia. Pregnant women who have emigrated recently from areas of high prevalence constitute a group at increased risk for tuberculosis who should be screened selectively with tuberculin tests and chest x-ray examinations.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antitubercular Agents / therapeutic use
  • Asia
  • Australia
  • Emigration and Immigration
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Mass Screening
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious / diagnosis*
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious / drug therapy
  • Prenatal Care
  • Tuberculosis / diagnosis*
  • Tuberculosis / prevention & control
  • Tuberculosis, Meningeal / diagnosis
  • Tuberculosis, Meningeal / drug therapy
  • Tuberculosis, Pulmonary / diagnosis
  • Tuberculosis, Pulmonary / drug therapy


  • Antitubercular Agents