After a student tested positive for tuberculosis at Longmont High School in Colorado last semester, officials there have been quick to point out the student is the only one so far with full-blown TB.
Tests of about 140 pupils who spent time in close proximity to the TB-infected student, however, have returned at a positive rate of about 40 percent. A rate Dr. Randall Reves, director of the Denver Metro Tuberculosis Control Program, told the Longmont Times Call was unusually high (and therefore more infectious), but not unheard of.
50 students have so far tested positive for latent tuberculosis at the school, leading public health officials to begin testing every 9th and 10th grader next week, with staff members, 11th, and 12th graders following the week after.
Testing will involve either a blood or skin test, with followup chest x-rays for any students who test positive, notes KDVR.
"The most important thing for parents to know is that the risk of their child being affected with tuberculosis is very, very low, but nonetheless if the school recommends that they be tested, they should be tested," added CBS4's Dr. Dave Hnida in an earlier report.