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Reactivation of latent tuberculosis in a COVID-19 patient on corticosteroid treatment
  1. Aviva Friedman and
  2. Katharine Claire DeGeorge
  1. Family Medicine, University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Aviva Friedman; ALYFRIEDMAN{at}GMAIL.COM


Though the COVID-19 pandemic has made international headlines since 2020, behind the scenes, tuberculosis (TB) has remained a leading cause of global mortality. According to the WHO, TB is 1 of the top 10 causes of death globally, with about one-quarter of the world’s population infected. This case report highlights a female patient who presented to the emergency department with signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and was admitted to hospital. When the patient demonstrated minimal clinical improvement after initiating treatment for COVID-19, further investigations uncovered concomitant reactivated TB. This case is helpful in underscoring the potential implications of the COVID-19 pandemic and current treatment guidelines on the global burden of TB, which could subsequently impact how practitioners approach screening and management of latent TB infection.

  • COVID-19
  • TB and other respiratory infections
  • Global Health

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  • Contributors AF performed literature search and writing of case report. KCD reviewed case and edited report.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.