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Revista da Sociedade Brasileira de Medicina Tropical

Print version ISSN 0037-8682On-line version ISSN 1678-9849


SILVA, Amanda Priscila de Santana Cabral; SOUZA, Wayner Vieira de  and  ALBUQUERQUE, Maria de Fátima Pessoa Militão de. Two decades of tuberculosis in a city in Northeastern Brazil: advances and challenges in time and space. Rev. Soc. Bras. Med. Trop. [online]. 2016, vol.49, n.2, pp.211-221. ISSN 0037-8682.


This study presents two decades of epidemiological data on tuberculosis (TB), in order to understanding the disease profile and its spatiotemporal dynamics.


This descriptive study was performed in the City of Olinda/Pernambuco, Brazil, from 1991-2010, and it analyzed new patients with TB living in the city. We used the χ²-test with a p-value <0.05 to identify differences in trends. Incidence and cluster distribution were identified using spatial scan statistics.


In total, 6202 new cases were recorded during the two decades. The highest incidence occurred in 1995 (110 cases/100,000 inhabitants), and the lowest occurred in 2009 (65 cases/100,000 inhabitants) (β=-1.44; R²=0.43; p=0.0018). The highest mortality occurred in 1998 (16 deaths/100,000 inhabitants), and the lowest occurred in 2008 (5 deaths/100,000 inhabitants) (β=-0.19; R²=0.17; p=0.07). There was a male predominance (65%), and ages ranged from 20-49 years (65%). There was a substantial increase in the number of patients that were cured after treatment (60% to 67%; p<0.001) as well as those tested for HIV (1.9% to 58.5%; p<0.001). During the first decade, clusters with p-values <0.05 included 29% of the total notified cases, and in the second decade, that percentage was 12%.


We observed a decreasing trend in incidence, which was significant, and mortality rates, which was not significant. The increased number of laboratory tests performed reflects advances in surveillance, and a reduction in the proportion of cases in primary clusters suggests, among other things, that the disease is spreading across the region.

Keywords : Tuberculosis; Epidemiological surveillance; Spatial analysis.

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