Heaf test

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The Heaf test used to be one of the tuberculin skin tests used to determine immunity to tuberculosis (TB) prior to BCG vaccination, or as a screening test for TB. It was the preferred and usual test in the UK until 2005.

The Heaf test is no longer available. By 2005 the UK was the only country to use it, and the sole manufacturer ceased production. The Mantoux test is now used instead.

The Heaf test had the advantages of:-

  • Ease of administration (compared to alternatives)
  • Could be read 7 days later (allowing clinics to be run weekly for administrative convenience).
needs a picture of the tines and "gun"

The Mantoux test must be read considerably sooner, requiring the team to work on two days per week.

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