Scrofula: a descriptive study on the clinical and diagnostic profile of patients with tuberculous lymphadenitis


  • Sushmita Vinod Department of Respiratory Medicine, Saveetha Medical College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Veena Charishma R. P. Department of Respiratory Medicine, Saveetha Medical College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Gangadharan Vadivelu Department of Respiratory Medicine, Saveetha Medical College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Sachin Vidyasagar Department of Respiratory Medicine, Saveetha Medical College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India



Tuberculosis, Cervical TB, Scrofula, GeneXpert


Background: Tuberculosis remains to be the major health burden primarily affecting the developing countries. The commonest is pulmonary tuberculosis. The aim of the study was to study about the clinical presentation of tuberculous cervical lymphadenopathy and to correlate clinical diagnosis with the histopathological findings, management, outcome, follow up and improvement.

Methods: A retrospective descriptive study involving 75 patients with cervical lymph node tuberculosis were followed up from the time of diagnosis till the completion of treatment.

Results: It is more common in young females (21-30 years). Constitutional symptoms absent in most of the patients. Mantoux and erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) raised in most cases. Fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) showed granuloma in 90.6% cases. GeneXpert results showed Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) detected rifampicin (Rif) resistance not detected in 65.3% and MTB detected Rif resistance detected in 6.1%. Most of the patients recovered daily chemotherapy regimen. Surgery was rarely needed.

Conclusions: TB is still the commonest cause of cervical lymph node enlargement in developing countries. FNAC is a rapid, cheap, simple, and effective method of diagnosis for cervical lymphadenopathy. Anti-tubercular drugs should be started in patients with FNAC/biopsy showing granuloma even if GeneXpert negative and all the patients must be followed up regularly.


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Original Research Articles