What is a Tuberculin Skin Test?

The Mantoux Tuberculin/PPD skin test is offered at Physicians Immediate Care. It is also known as a PPD test or the Mantoux test. The test requires two separate clinic visits: the first for the administration of the test, and the second for an examination and interpretation of the results. On the first visit, the test is administered by a small injection of tuberculin purified protein derivative (PPD) under the skin of the forearm.

To receive results, the patient must return for a second appointment after 48-72 hours. At the second appointment, our staff examines the forearm for signs of a reaction to the protein injected. Our staff, trained in reading the test, if need be, will also have our Provider consider the patient’s medical history, as well as the size of the swelling or of the raised, hard area that may appear.

The Mantoux tuberculin skin test detects the presence of, or exposure to, tuberculosis. A negative response to the test means the patient has not been exposed to Mycobacterium tuberculosis, while a positive response indicates that there is a possibility of exposure. The test result will also be positive if the patient has recently received the BCG vaccine against tuberculosis (this vaccine is not available in the US). Further testing, by blood test and X-ray, is necessary to confirm whether the patient has an active infection of tuberculosis.

If you are in need of a TB test you can walk-in to any of our clinics or Reserve Your Time Online!