According to the World Health Organization (WHO), health services need to be actively engaged for an effective and rapid response to COVID-19 while ensuring that TB and other essential health services are maintained.1

TB blood testing can provide critical insight into the elevated risks associated with COVID-19

  • People ill with COVID-19 and TB show similar symptoms such as cough, fever, and difficulty breathing1
  • While experience with COVID-19 infection in TB patients remains limited, it is anticipated that people ill with both TB and COVID-19 may have poorer treatment outcomes, especially if TB treatment is interrupted1
  • The sooner you can detect latent TB in your patients, the earlier you can start treatment, potentially lowering their risk factors for an unfavorable outcome from a COVID-19 infection
TB blood tests are preferred over tuberculin skin tests (TST) for many patient types and situations.
The CDC and other medical organizations prefer interferon-gamma release assays (IGRAs) for certain patient populations:
  • Groups with poor rates of return for TST reading2
  • Individuals who have received the Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccination
  • Individuals taking the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) immigration exams3
Today’s TB blood tests—T-SPOT®.TB and QuantiFERON®-TB Gold Plus: objective resulting
  • Results available from a single patient visit
  • Option for electronic results (reported straight to EMR)
  • T-SPOT.TB—estimated sensitivity: 95.6%; estimated specificity: 97.1%
  • QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus—estimated sensitivity: 94.09%; estimated specificity: 97.27%
  • Flexible collection options: 1 tube or 4 tubes

Learn more about QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus

Learn more about T-SPOT.TB

Century-old Mantoux tuberculin skin test: subjective reading/interpretation
  • Requires 2 patient visits and manual results
  • Sensitivity 95%–98% in patients with proven active tuberculosis, specificity as low as 59% in BCG-vaccinated patients (high false positives)

The photograph was originally published in the Valley Echo and has been reproduced with the permission of the Lung Association of Saskatchewan.

T-SPOT.TB makes TB testing easy in pediatric patient populations

Easy collection

  • 1 visit reduces the need for multiple visits
  • The younger the child, the smaller the blood sample
  • Can be drawn with a butterfly needle to reduce needle pain
Masked Doctor with Parent and Child

One visit. One tube. One accurate result.

TB screening in 1 office visit is more important than ever during the pandemic.

Screening your pediatric patients for TB is essential as they return to school and other activities. With T-SPOT.TB, you can confidently complete pediatric patient screening for latent TB in 1 visit.

T-SPOT.TB offers low false positive rates compared to skin tests of BCG-vaccinated individuals.4

T-SPOT.TB uses a proprietary enumeration process that includes washing, counting, and standardizing the number of T cells in each specimen, an innovative approach that produces results physicians and patients can trust.

Learn how your practice or organization can benefit from blood test accuracy and single-visit efficiency.

Choosing the better way to test for TB is more important than ever as we face the implications of COVID-19

  • 1 visit, 1 tube: Both T-SPOT.TB and QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus require the patient to come into the office only 1 time instead of 2 times, which reduces office visits and minimizes potential exposure to COVID-19
  • Specimen collection is available through 2,250+ Patient Service Centers (PSCs). Our PSCs have implemented enhanced safety precautions through our Peace of Mind program, including more frequent cleaning, social distancing, and required face masks for both patients and employees
When you’re ready to make the switch, Quest Diagnostics offers a choice of tuberculosis blood tests: T-SPOT.TB and QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus (QFT-Plus), both of which have a single-tube collection option. Get in touch with us today.
Test name Test code CPT codea
T-SPOT.TB 37737 86481
QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus, 1 Tube 36970 86480
QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus, 4 Tubes, Draw Site Incubated 36971 86480

a The CPT codes provided are based on AMA guidelines and are for informational purposes only. CPT coding is the sole responsibility of the billing party. Please direct any questions regarding coding to the payer being billed.

Questions? Call 1.866.MYQUEST (1.866.697.8378)

Quest Diagnostics is committed to providing the most advanced TB screening available, in accordance with clinical guidelines.

Tuberculosis screening guidelines have been updated to include modern TB infection testing methods, including interferon-gamma release assays or TB blood tests, to address the limitations of the tuberculin skin tests.

United States Preventive Services Task Force5

Grade B recommendation:

  • Screening for latent TB infection (LTBI) in populations at increased risk
    • Foreign-born adults from higher prevalence countries, regardless of age, duration in the US, or comorbidities
    • Individuals in congregate settings
  • Ensures LTBI screening for at-risk adults is covered by most private health plans, Medicaid, and Medicare
American Thoracic Society, Infectious Diseases Society of America, and CDC6
  • IGRAs are preferred for patients > 5 years of age with low to intermediate risk of progression, regardless of BCG status or likelihood of returning6
  • IGRA or TST can be used without preference in individuals > 5 years of age with high risk of progression6
  • TST is preferred for children < 5 years of age, but IGRA is acceptable6
  • American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) endorses these guidelines7
American Academy of Pediatrics8
  • IGRAs or tuberculin skin test can be used to detect TB infection among at-risk children > 2 years of age
  • IGRAs are preferred for children who are BCG-vaccinated or unlikely to return to have TST read
  • Children with HIV infection should receive annual IGRA testing or TST
  • Risk assessment for TB should be performed at the first encounter and then annually
American College of Rheumatology (ACR)5
  • TB screening in all rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients being considered for therapy with biological agents, regardless of the presence of risk factors for TB infection
  • IGRA is preferred over TST in the same patients listed in the CDC guidelines
  • IGRA can be performed as an initial test in all RA patients, in annual testing, and where TB exposure is likely
  • In immunosuppressed RA patients with risk of TB exposure, a repeat test can be considered 1–3 weeks after initial negative result
  • Annual TB screening in RA patients who live, travel, or work in environments where TB exposure is likely while continuing treatment with biologics

Get in touch with us

There are often a lot of questions when it comes to TB testing—more so today with the complications of the COVID-19 pandemic. Please complete the form below for a sales representative to contact you to discuss the benefits of IGRA blood testing, or to help you select the right test for your patients.

We’ll get back to you shortly. If you need immediate assistance, please call 1.866.MY.QUEST (1.866.697.8378).