Evaluation of a short training course of chest X-ray interpretation for the diagnosis of paediatric TB.

Melingui BF Leroy-Terquem E Palmer M Taguebue J-V Wachinou AP Gaudelus J et al.
IJTLD OPEN, Volume 1, Number 2, 1 February 2024, pp. 76-82(7). doi:10.5588/ijtld open.23.0484
chest X-ray children diagnosis limited-resources countries tuberculosis


Chest X-ray (CXR) interpretation is challenging for the diagnosis of paediatric TB. We assessed the performance of a three half-day CXR training module for healthcare workers (HCWs) at low healthcare levels in six high TB incidence countries.

Within the TB-Speed Decentralization Study, we developed a three half-day training course to identify normal CXR, CXR of good quality and identify six TB-suggestive features. We performed a pre–post training assessment on a pre-defined set of 20 CXR readings. We compared the proportion of correctly interpreted CXRs and the median reading score before and after the training using the McNemar test and a linear mixed model.

Of 191 HCWs, 43 (23%) were physicians, 103 (54%) nurses, 18 (9.4%) radiology technicians and 12 (6.3%) other professionals. Of 2,840 CXRs with both assessment, respectively 1,843 (64.9%) and 2,277 (80.2%) were correctly interpreted during pre-training and post-training (P < 0.001). The median reading score improved significantly from 13/20 to 16/20 after the training, after adjusting by country, facility and profession (adjusted β = 3.31, 95% CI 2.44–4.47).

Despite some limitations of the course assessment that did not include abnormal non-TB suggestive CXR, study findings suggest that a short CXR training course could improve HCWs’ interpretation skills in diagnosing paediatric TB.