Two most common types of testing for TB infection include the skin test and the blood test. Tuberculosis (TB) is a lung disease that affects the immune system and will become more serious over time if not treated. Whether TB is latent or active, it is always important to have a test if there is any potential that a respiratory infection may, in fact, be tuberculosis.
Walk In 24 Hour Urgent Care and TB Testing
Luckily, most urgent care centers are open 24 hours and are able to complete any testing for TB infection. While the symptoms can vary, respiratory infections are one of the most common issues treated in urgent care, and the doctors will know whether or not to test for TB.
TB is a bacterial infection of the lungs that can be spread from actions as simple as talking, coughing, and sneezing. There are two types of TB – latent and active. Active TB is more serious than latent TB and comes with symptoms as serious as coughing that lasts for at least two or three weeks, coughing up blood, chest pain, fatigue, trouble breathing, dizziness, chills, appetite loss, and more. Many of these symptoms are similar to other less serious health issues that are managed regularly in urgent care or a medical clinic. Luckily, a doctor will know with the number or severity of symptoms whether to issue a TB test.
Different TB Tests
The skin test and blood test for TB are completed differently, and the need for them is often determined by the symptoms. Most often the skin test is helpful if you fear you may have latent TB because you have been around another person suffering from active TB or who has the symptoms of active TB. The TB skin test requires two visits to the doctor to see what the repeated response to the test is. An injection is provided to see if there is a reaction to a TB-related sample called tuberculin. Luckily, there is no problem in repeating the skin test if further questions of TB infection occur.
Then, there is the TB blood test. This is a plain and simple sample of a patient’s blood extracted for testing of TB infection or TB disease. It is also important to know that infection with the TB bacteria does not necessarily mean that you have the tuberculosis disease.