Abdul Munaim Mumtaz, Faiza Ambreen, Hafiz Zahak Mahmood
Objective: The objective of the study was to compare the Acid-Fast Bacilli (AFB) staining and Culture for the diagnosis of extra-pulmonary tuberculosis and to find out extra-pulmonary tuberculosis burden from various sites of the body in suspected tuberculosis patients. Methods: The study was conducted in Bahawal Victoria Hospital, Bahawalpur, Pakistan from June 2019 to November 2020. Standard method for Acid Fast Bacilli (AFB) staining and culture was followed. The standard Ziehl-Neelsen Technique was done for AFB staining and culture was done in Ogawa Medium. Results: Out of 1058 extra-pulmonary samples cultured 20 (1.9%) were positive while out of 292 extra-pulmonary samples tested by AFB smear a mere 0.7% (2) were positive. The isolation rate for extra-pulmonary samples was three-fold higher in culture in comparison to AFB Smear. The confirmation rate of extra-pulmonary tuberculosis was approximately 1/ 8th of the pulmonary tuberculosis by conventional bacteriological diagnostic methods. Of the extra-pulmonary tuberculosis renal, endometrial or pelvic and cold abscess were common in this study. Tuberculosis was also isolated from peritoneal fluid, pericardial fluid, Synovial fluid, lymph node and cerebrospinal fluids only by culture. Conclusion: The bacteriological conventional technique could diagnose a very low number of extra-pulmonary tuberculosis while the standard AFB culture has a much better role for diagnosis of extra-pulmonary tuberculosis. Novel techniques of diagnosis should be considered to confirm more extra-pulmonary tuberculosis. Keywords: AFB Smear, Extra-pulmonary tuberculosis, Culture, Diagnosis.