Epidemiology and Infection

Type 2 diabetes and tuberculosis in a dynamic bi-national border population

B. I. RESTREPO a1 1 , S. P. FISHER-HOCH a1 1 , J. G. CRESPO a2 1 , E. WHITNEY a1 1 , A. PEREZ a1 1 , B. SMITH a3 1 and J. B. McCORMICK a1c1 1
a1 University of Texas School of Public Health Regional Campus in Brownsville, Brownsville, TX, USA
a2 Secretaría de Salud de Tamaulipas, Ciudad Victoria, Mexico
a3 Texas Department of State and Health Services Region 11, Harlingen, TX, USA

Article author query
restrepo bi   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
fisher-hoch sp   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
crespo jg   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
whitney e   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
perez a   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
smith b   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
mccormick jb   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 


The epidemic of type 2 diabetes in the United States prompted us to explore the association between diabetes and tuberculosis (TB) on the South Texas–Mexico border, in a large population of mostly non-hospitalized TB patients. We examined 6 years of retrospective data from all TB patients (n=5049) in South Texas and northeastern Mexico and found diabetes self-reported by 27·8% of Texan and 17·8% of Mexican TB patients, significantly exceeding national self-reported diabetes rates for both countries. Diabetes comorbidity substantially exceeded that of HIV/AIDS. Patients with TB and diabetes were older, more likely to have haemoptysis, pulmonary cavitations, be smear positive at diagnosis, and remain positive at the end of the first (Texas) or second (Mexico) month of treatment. The impact of type 2 diabetes on TB is underappreciated, and in the light of its epidemic status in many countries, it should be actively considered by TB control programmes, particularly in older patients.

(Accepted May 3 2006)
(Published Online July 25 2006)

c1 University of Texas Health Science Center Houston – School of Public Health, University of Texas at Brownsville, 80 Fort Brown, SPH Bldg, Brownsville, TX 78520, USA. (Email: Joseph.B.McCormick@utb.edu)


1 with the Nuevo Santander Tuberculosis Trackers