The limitations of polymerase chain reaction in the setting of possible recurrent tuberculosis: 2 instructional cases

Thomas R. Schulz, Alan C. Street, Emma S. McBryde

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleOtherpeer-review


The interpretation of a positive result for Mycobacterium tuberculosis by nucleic acid amplification such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR) can be challenging. We present 2 cases that illustrate the limitations of tuberculosis PCR on respiratory secretions in previously treated patients, even years after the previous disease episode.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)293-296
Number of pages4
JournalDiagnostic Microbiology and Infectious Disease
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • False positive
  • Nucleic Acid Testing
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Tuberculosis

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