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What Is Quantiferon Gold Test

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Quantiferon Tb Gold Plus Blood Test

10. What is the Quantiferon Gold Test?

The QuantiFERON TB Gold Blood Test is an in vitro assay to aid in the diagnosis of both latent and active infection with Mycobacterium Tuberculosis.

Also Known As: Interferon-gamma Release Assay for Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Methodology: Whole blood interferon-gamma test measuring responses to CD4+ and CD8+ T cell antigens

Preparation: No fasting required. This test requires a special collection kit that may not be available at all LabCorp locations. Contact your local LabCorp draw site to verify they have the collection kit in stock before visiting the lab.

Test Results: 7-10 days. May take longer based on weather, holiday or lab delays.

Also Known As: Interferon-gamma Release Assay for Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Methodology: Immunoassay

Preparation: No fasting required. This test requires a special collection kit that may not be available at all LabCorp locations. Contact your local LabCorp draw site to verify they have the collection kit in stock before visiting the lab.

Test Results: 4-6 days. May take longer based on weather, holiday or lab delays.

The Qft Advantage Three Tubes One Clear Result

QFT uses unique blood collection tubes that enable immediate exposure of viable blood lymphocytes to highly specific TB antigens ) and test controls coated on the inner surface of the tubes. Antigen exposure produces a quantifiable immune response to aid in the diagnosis of TB infection.

Nil tube

Low response may indicate inability to generate IFN-

What Is A Quantiferon Tb Gold Test

TB gold is also known as QuantiFERON TB gold. It is a simple blood test done to diagnose the presence of tuberculosis bacterium in the body. QuantiFERON is an Interferon Gamma Release Assay used to detect the TB bacterium. It measures the response of a persons immune system with the help of a certain substance called gamma interferon. This substance is released by the white blood cells in a blood sample when they are exposed to specific TB antigens.

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Quantiferon Gold Test Cost With Insurance

Most of the health insurance policies in the U.S. cover the cost of TB gold blood test. However, the coverage offered by private health insurance companies and national health insurance programs like Medicare and Medicaid varies widely. So we recommend you to check the coverage of your health insurance plan before getting tested for TB.

Our quantiferon TB gold testing providers do not accept any kind of health insurance plan. But, on request, they can provide you with an itemized receipt containing all the details like the name and code of the test, and CPT code that is necessary for insurance reimbursement purposes.

Tb Regional Training Centers


Valuable resources are available from the US Centers of Disease Control and Prevention The CDCs Division of Tuberculosis Elimination has funded five TB Regional Training and Medical Consultation Center . These centers provide training, technical assistance, medical consultation, and the development of education materials to TB programs and healthcare providers . To learn more about the RTMCC that covers your region, visit

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Qft Performance Interpretation And Use

Tuberculin testing is performed for persons who are 1) suspected as having active TB 2) at increased risk for progression to active TB 3) at increased risk for LTBI or 4) at low risk for LTBI, but are tested for other reasons .

QFT Performance

Aliquots of heparinized whole blood are incubated with the test antigens for 16–24 hours.* The antigens included in the test kits are PPD from M. tuberculosis and PPD from Mycobacterium avium . The kits also include phytohemaglutinin , and saline . After incubation, the concentration of IFN- in the separated plasma is determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay .

QFT results are based on the proportion of IFN- released in response to tuberculin as compared with mitogen, or / × 100 = percentage tuberculin response.§ The difference in the amount of IFN- released in response to tuberculin as compared with avian sensitin is expressed as — / × 100 = percentage avian difference. A computer program is available from the test manufacturer that performs these calculations and interprets the test results.¶

QFT Interpretation

Interpretation of QFT results is stratified by estimated risk for infection with M. tuberculosis, in a manner similar to that used for interpreting TST with different cut-off values. QFT results indicative of M. tuberculosis infection include the following three criteria:

  • and are both > 1.5 IU and
  • percentage avian difference < 10 and
  • percentage tuberculin response > 15 or > 30 .
  • How Do You Confirm Tuberculosis

    The Mantoux tuberculin skin test or the TB blood test can be used to test for M. tuberculosis infection. Additional tests are required to confirm TB disease. The Mantoux tuberculin skin test is performed by injecting a small amount of fluid called tuberculin into the skin in the lower part of the arm.

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    What Are The Pros And Cons Of Quantiferon Test

    The FDA-approved QFT test contains a cocktail of three mycobacterial proteins that stimulate the patients T-cells in vitro to release interferon-gamma. The interferon-gamma is then measured using ELISA technology.

    In laymens terms, that means the QuantiFERON test has a high degree of reliability. It also prevents the false positive readings common with PPDs.

    Though a more expensive test, the QuantiFERON on average saves 4 days of waiting time. Ultimately, that delay could cost patients a potential job or agencies a potential case.

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    What Do The Results Mean

    Quantiferon TB Testing

    The QuantiFERON-TB Gold blood test will come back with either a positive or a negative result. In some people, an inconclusive result may occasionally occur. A negative result means that there is not active or latent tuberculosis infection. A positive result is an indication that there is an infection that is present and that follow-up treatment may be necessary.

    An inconclusive test is generally cause by a laboratory error or a blood sample that has sat for too long.

    The one issue that may present itself for some people is that blood test results must be processed within 12 hours of collection in order for the test to be accurate. For medical providers that must ship out blood draws to a laboratory for this test, it may be impossible for the sample to reach the lab in time. In these instances, the TST is still the best choice.

    The QuantiFERON-TB Gold blood test may be a more accurate diagnostic tool, but it is not considered a complete replacement for a medical providers personal judgment. For those who have had repetitive TSTs in the past and need a definitive result, then this blood test may be able to provide it.

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    Does Cvs Do Tb Blood Tests

    TB testing. MinuteClinic® offers convenient, walk in TB testing for those required to have it for their work, or persons at increased risk of becoming infected. Your MinuteClinic provider will review your medical history, apply the tuberculin skin test and arrange your follow-up visit for assessment of the results.

    What Do I Do If I Have A Positive Qft

    A positive result only indicates the likelihood of infection and does not mean you have active tuberculosis or that you are contagious. Active tuberculosis is diagnosed through a combination of laboratory tests , X-rays and other clinical evaluations. Your doctor will advise you on the next steps if you have a positive QFT-Plus result.

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    What Are The Benefits Of Qft

    QFT-Plus is a highly accurate test with> 97% specificity for detection of TB infection.

    One visit to the doctor Two visits to the doctor
    A small sample of blood is taken Tuberculin is injected into the skin
    Results are unaffected by the prior TB vaccination Results may be affected by the BCG vaccine
    Results determined in a laboratory Results determined by subjective/visual assessment

    Quantiferon Tb Gold Plus


    The QuantiFERON-TB Gold test measures the immune system response of T cell activation to a possible Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. Particularly, these immune responsive T- cells become sensitized to the exposure of several high-specificity TB antigens. The QuantiFERON-TB Gold test uses a single mixture of these several antigens. The exposure to these causes the immune system to yield Interferon-? . This existence or absence of this molecule associates to a diagnosis of TB. Additionally, the magnitude of immune response can be determined through a QuantiFERON-TB Gold test, which gives a physician a broad view of the illness and can help in treatment. This test has demonstrated usefulness in younger patients , as well as those with HIV co-morbidity. The QuantiFERON-TB Gold test is effective and efficient. This test boasts 97% specificity, although some studies have found poorer sensitivity with increasing age. Additionally, it has a 24 hour turnaround time, although that can be elongated due to laboratory and provider delay. A shortcoming for this test is that it needs a special syringe, which can disrupt test results and create the need for retests.

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    Question 5 What Are Conversion And Reversion

    Conversion: With respect to TB antigens, conversion is the point at which IFN- becomes detectable above the established threshold or cutoff from a previous negative or unknown result.

    Reversion: The opposite of conversiona result that goes from above the established cutoff to below the cutoff . While there are no data derived using the QFT-Plus test, there are numerous publications on conversion/reversion based on the QuantiFERON-TB Gold test.

    In one study of the QuantiFERON-TB Gold assay, among individuals with quantitative IFN- values just above or just below the cutoff threshold, reversions and conversions were common.5 Per the package insert, it is prudent to confirm a positive QFT-Plus test by the same or alternate method before starting therapy if M tuberculosis complex infection is not suspected.

    Advantages Of The Quantiferon Tb Gold Include:

    • Not needing to return for the test results like the TB skin test which requires 2 visits
    • BCG vaccine will not cause a false positive in Quantiferon test as it sometimes does with a TB Skin test
    • Results are usually available in 3-5 business days
    • Can be used in all circumstances in which a TB Skin test is recommended

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    An Alternative To The Tuberculin Skin Test

    The QuantiFERON®-TB Gold In-Tube is a blood test for use as an aid in diagnosing Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection .3 The test is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use with adult patients.

    CDC Statement: “The greater specificity of the Quantiferon test and the requirement for only one visit are compelling advantages.”

    What Is A Ppd Test

    Next generation TB testing with QuantiFERON TB Gold Plus

    During a PPD test, the patient receives a Mantoux implant under the top layer of skin on their forearm. The PPD implant contains Tuberculosis antigens called purified protein derivatives . If the patient has been exposed to the tuberculosis bacteria, a firm red bump will develop at the point of the injection within two days.

    For this reason, a clinician must read the induration 24-48 hours after the procedure to validate the exam. This means patients must make two office visits when doing a PPD test. Based on the size of the induration, either non-present or 5-15 mm, the clinician will make a prognosis.

    Besides the inconvenience of a second visit, PPDs have a reputation of being less reliable. Thats because results rely heavily on the clinician doing the reading.

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    Understanding Results Ofquantiferon Tb Gold

    Reference Range
    Above 0.35 IU /ml Positive

    *A Reference range is a set of values which helps the healthcare professional to interpret a medical test. It may vary with age, gender, and other factors. Reference ranges may also vary between labs, in value & units depending on instruments used and method of establishment of reference ranges

    What Does It Mean When Your Tb Gold Test Is Positive

    Done with 9mos tb treatment. had xray its normal. no tb symptoms ever since. mine is latent tb. how come tb gold test is positive? am i still sick? TB +: Your TB test will always stay positive. It just means you have been exposed to TB- not that you do or do not have the active disease. Read More

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    How Is The Quantiferon Tb Gold Test Done

    Quantiferon TB gold test is done using the blood sample.

    During this test, a lab technician or a phlebotomist will cleanse the area to be injected with a disinfectant liquid and wrap an elastic band around the upper arm to make the vein visible and swell with blood. He/she then injects a needle to draw a sample of blood and collects the blood sample in a test tube. After the blood is drawn, he/she covers the injected area with a band-aid or a cotton ball to stop bleeding. The collected blood speciemen is then sent to the lab for further analysis.

    It takes less than 5 to 10 minutes to perform this test.

    The ideal time to get tested for tuberculosis:

    You can get tested for TB immediately when you suspect the possibility of exposure to TB bacterium or when you experience any of the TB symptoms. There is no window period or incubation period necessary to get tested for TB gold test.

    What Are The 3 Types Of Tuberculosis

    What is QuantiFERON

    Tuberculosis: TypesActive TB Disease. Active TB is an illness in which the TB bacteria are rapidly multiplying and invading different organs of the body. … Miliary TB. Miliary TB is a rare form of active disease that occurs when TB bacteria find their way into the bloodstream. … Latent TB Infection.

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    Get Lowest Quantiferon Gold Test Cost At $199

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , TB surveillance data reported that 9029 new cases of TB were diagnosed in 2018 in the United States. Although the number of cases reported is low, it remains important for people at higher risk of getting tuberculosis to get tested for TB screening at an earlier stage to completely eradicate TB. TB is a highly contagious disease. So we recommend everyone who suspects the possibility of being exposed to tuberculosis bacterium to get tested for quantiferon gold blood test immediately.

    The article below covers all the significant topics related to TB gold blood tests such as Quantiferon gold test cost, who should get tested for quantiferon gold blood test, preparation, risks, and how to get tested for TB gold test.

  • Quantiferon TB gold test cost.
  • What is a Quantiferon TB gold test?
  • What is a Tuberculosis ?
  • Forms of TB.
  • What are the complications of tuberculosis if left untreated?
  • Who is recommended for the TB gold test?
  • How is the TB gold test done?
  • Is there any preparation required before the test?
  • Are there any risks in the test?
  • What does the test result mean?
  • How to prevent Tuberculosis?
  • Provider Locations.
  • For our readers, who are very much interested in knowing the TB gold test cost beforehand, we begin with that section.

    How Can I Save Money

    Currently, QFT-G may be covered under your medical insurance plan. Talk with your insurance cover provider to find out whether this is the case. If you are looking for a new health insurance policy, consider browsing through hundreds for free at

    Medical rebates are available only if the person is immune-suppressed.

    Advertising Disclosure: This content may include referral links. Please read our disclosure policy for more info.

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    Quantiferon Tb Blood Test Results

    Conservatively, QuantiFERON TB blood test results typically take approximately six business days to be reported. For many people in busy metropolitan areas, TB blood test results can be available in as soon as three business days. A negative QuantiFERON lab report, when accurate, is the best result. It indicates that evidence of tuberculosis exposure cannot be found in the blood specimen. A negative lab test is similar to a negative TB skin test and, in most cases, does not require a chest x-ray for confirmation or other diagnostic studies.

    What does a TB blood test result mean? Positive or indeterminate QuantiFERON TB blood test results typically mean that you will need to get a chest x-ray to confirm that you do not have active tuberculosis. Negative QuantiFERON Gold results imply that you do not have latent tuberculosis at the time the blood was drawn.

    Quantiferon Tb Gold Test Result Interpretation

    Quantiferon Instructions

    A positive response to the QuantiFERON Tb Gold Test indicates towards the infection with the Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Although it does not mean that the person has active TB, rather it simply means that the person has been exposed to the mycobacterium tuberculosis bacterium.

    QuantiFERON is unable to distinguish between active tuberculosis disease and latent tuberculosis infection and as such the Quantiferon gold test is used in conjunction with risk assessment, radiography and other medical and diagnostic evaluations.

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    Tb Blood Test Vs Tb Skin Testing

    Traditionally, TB screening has been done through a TB skin test, also known as a PPD test or a Mantoux test. To get a TB skin test, one needs to visit a medical office and receive a small injection of a substance known as a protein purified derivative in the forearm. After 48-96 hours, the forearm needs to be checked and measured by a medical provider to see if any swelling, or induration, has developed at the site of the injection. If a raised swelling above a certain size is noted on the second visit, a chest x-ray is required to make sure that tuberculosis is not present in the lungs. As a result, the TB skin test requires a minimum of two visits and possibly more if the TB skin test is read as positive.

    As opposed to the TB skin test, the TB blood test is more convenient as it only requires one visit to a laboratory. During the lab visit, a simple, nearly painless blood draw is performed and the specimen is processed by the lab using specialized equipment. In contrast to the TB skin test, a second visit is not required for a TB blood test. And, because the QuantiFERON test uses sophisticated lab machinery instead of relying on manual skin measurements by a medical provider, this TB blood test is more accurate, particularly in borderline cases.

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