Tuberculosis Testing

There are 2 tests that can be done to detect a tuberculosis (TB) infection - the skin test and blood test. A positive result from either of these tests only tells that a person has been exposed to the bacteria. It does not determine if the person has latent TB infection or if the person has progressed TB disease, as this requires further testing.

How to Get Tested

As part of the effort to monitor public health in our community, St. Charles County offers TB testing for a nominal fee.

The blood test option is recommended for individuals that have received a Bacille-Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccination, have had a positive PPD skin test in the past or who are deemed to be at high risk for developing the disease. For this test, a small amount of blood is drawn and delivered to a laboratory to test for exposure to the TB bacteria. A return to the testing facility for further examination is not required with blood tests. Please call 636-949-7319 to schedule an appointment for a TB blood test.

If test results are positive, our Health Services Clinic staff will assist you in obtaining additional treatment.

Treatment For Positive Cases

In cooperation with the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, tuberculosis medications are provided to cases of both active disease and infection. An order from a patient’s physician is required, as Direct Observed Therapy (DOT) is recommended for active cases.

Should I Get A Test To Check For TB?

Some people get tests because their jobs require it (a school or hospital, for example - to make sure they will not infect others if they have TB). If you fall into a high-risk category for TB, if you have never had a test before, or if there is no record of a previous test, you should consider testing. If you are not certain, be sure to consult with your doctor.

High Risk

High-risk categories include:
  • Those who share the same breathing space with someone known to have active TB disease
  • Persons with HIV infection or another medical condition that makes the body less able to protect itself from disease
  • Homeless individuals
  • Those who are underfed
  • Alcoholics and intravenous drug users
  • Nursing home residents
  • Those within or recently released from a corrections facility
  • Foreign-born individuals from countries with high TB rates
  • Those who inject illegal drugs