Intended for healthcare professionals

Fillers A memorable patient

Check, check, and check again

BMJ 2000; 320 doi: (Published 27 May 2000) Cite this as: BMJ 2000;320:1452
  1. Geoff Scott, consultant clinical microbiologist
  1. London

    A well known author came in at the end of our tuberculosis clinic with an x ray which suggested tuberculosis. He was well but his contact was a man with AIDS and tuberculosis on the ward. He had no symptoms and the physical examination was normal so, as is customary, I asked him to provide some sputum, which he managed with great perseverance, and blood and arranged to see him a few days later.

    He had a partner and child, and I called them to the contact clinic for Heaf tests and chest x ray examinations, which turned out to be negative. His blood tests were normal and the sputum was negative on direct examination, but I was so sure that his chest x ray …

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