Diagnostic accuracy of Xpert MTB/RIF for TB detection in different regions with different endemic burden: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Shiying Li et al.
July 16, 2017, 10:57 p.m.



To estimate the diagnostic accuracy of Xpert MTB/RIF, a systematic review and meta-analysis were carried out.


Up to June 20, 2015, multiple databases were screened for relevant studies.


Accordingly, 106 studies included 52,410 samples were selected. Diagnostic accuracy of Xpert MTB/RIF for TB detection was validated against either culture or a composite reference standard (CRS). Additionally, selected studies were further subgrouped in four groups based on sample’s type, subject’s age, status of HIV co-infection and smear-positivity. The overall pooled sensitivity and specificity of Xpert MTB/RIF was 0.85 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.82–0.88) and 0.98 (95% CI 0.96–0.98), respectively, compared to culture; while it was 0.59 (95% CI 0.44–0.72) and 0.99 (95% CI 0.97–1.00) compared to CRS. The overall sensitivity was lower in countries with high TB prevalence than countries with middle/low prevalence (0.84, 95% CI: 0.80–0.88 versus 0.89, 95% CI: 0.84–0.93). Furthermore, Xpert MTB/RIF has higher sensitivity in patients with positive smears (0.99, 95% CI 0.97–0.99), in patients with pulmonary TB samples (0.87, 95% CI 0.83–0.90), in adults (0.82, 95% CI 0.76–0.86) and in HIV-positive patients (0.81, 95% CI 0.73–0.87).


Taken together, Xpert MTB/RIF is a quick and accurate diagnostic assay for TB which will significantly help the physicians to make their clinical decisions.

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Source: PLOS ONE