Mycobacterial adenitis: role of mycobacterium bovis, non-tuberculous mycobacteria, hiv infection, and risk factors in arusha, Tanzania

Thumbnail Image



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


East African Medical Journal


Objective: To assess risk factors and mycobacterial agents in mycobacterial adenitis. Design: Cross sectional involving comparison analysis of high-risk groups. Setting: Seven hospitals in rural and semi-rural districts of Arusha. Subjects: The study comprised of 457 patients of clinically diagnosed mycobacterial adenitis. Interventions: Biopsy materials were cultured and identification of mycobacterial isolates, and HIV infection testing were performed using standard methods. A questionnaire was used to establish information for assessing risk factors. Main outcome measures: Proportions of mycobacterial isolates, risk factors and odds ratios. Results: Of the 457 specimens, 65(14.2%) were culture positive. Isolates identified were M. bovis, 7(10.8%) M. tuberculosis, 27(41.5%) and non-tuberculous mycobacteria 31(47.7%). HIV infection and ingestion of raw milk were linked with increased risk of M. bovis infection by OR of 13.6 (95% CI, 1.7 - 109.9) and 15.28 (3.26 - 71.7), respectively. On multivariate analysis, an OR of 16.2 (1.3 - 201.3) for having M. bovis adenitis was linked to HIV infection, raw milk and houses with poor ventilation. An OR of 5.2 (1.2 - 20.6) for non-tuberculous mycobacterial adenitis was linked to history of TB in the family, HIV infection, raw milk, raw animal products and poor knowledge on transmission of tuberculosis. Conclusions: M. bovis caused one out of ten cases of culture positive mycobacterial adenitis. Non-tuberculous mycobacteria were more common than M. tuberculosis (50% and 40% of the cases, respectively). HIV infection and raw animal products are among the risk factors identified for M. bovis and non-tuberculous mycobacterial adenitis.


East African Medical Journal 2004, Vol. 81 (4)


Mycobacterial adenitis, Mycobacterium bovis, Non-tuberculous, Tuberculosis (TB), Mycobacterial agents, HIV infection testing