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PPD Implants, NYC PPD TB Skin Testing

Mobile Health offers PPD implants for tuberculosis screening in 6 NYC & Long Island locations.

The entire process was very well run and the wait time between the different procedures was short. I was very impressed that the staff made the effort to learn some basic Chinese to help patients.
—Mobile Health Patient
PPD Test Information

What is a PPD?

A purified protein derivative (PPD) skin test is a test that determins if you are tuberculosis positive. Tuberculosis is a serious lung infection, cuased by the bacteria Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

How long does a PPD test take?

It’s important to know that a PPD implant requires 2 office visits. On the first visit, Mobile Health will inject the tuberculin into the top layer of the patient’s skin in the arm. This will generally result in a small bump to form that will go away in a few hours. Within 48-72 hours, the area administered has to be reviewed by a medical professional for results. If the area was not reviewed within 72 hours, the test is void, and the PPD needs to be implanted again.

How do you prepare for a PPD test?

Individuals do not need to prepare or take any special precautions before a PPD implant. Normal effects of the implant usually include some redness around the injection mark.

Do all PPD test take two office visits?

Yes, all PPD tests require two office visits. On the first visit the injection is made and on the second visit, within 48-72 hours after injection, the area of injection must be reviewed by a medical professional. However, an alternative TB exam exist that only require one office visit.

What happens if test comes back positive?

When the PPD is examined, the medical professional measures the “induration”. The induration is the “palpable, raised, hardened area or swelling”. This does not include the erythema or redness around the induration.

Mobile Health considers any induration over 10mm in size to be a positive result. This does not confirm a positive test for tuberculosis since there are a few factors that may lead to a false positive such as:

  • Recent immigration (< 5 years) from high-prevalence countries
  • Injection drug users
  • Residents and employees of high-risk congregate settings
  • Mycobacteriology laboratory personnel
  • Persons with clinical conditions that place them at high risk
  • People with a known negative test in the past 2 years
  • People with diabetes, kidney failure, or other conditions that increase their chance of getting active TB
  • Health care workers

Because of these possibilities, Mobile Health will recommend a chest x-ray for a visual confirmation. Both the Manhattan and Hempstead locations have x-ray rooms available for further confirmation.

Why choose a PPD test?

A PPD test is an easy, cost-effective way of determining the presence of tuberculosis bacteria. A negative reaction to the shot generally means that you have never been infected with the bacteria that causes TB.

A potential downside of a PPD test is that it requires two visits. Further, a PPD test can sometimes show a false negative or a false positive.

Where can you get a PPD test?

Mobile Health offers PPD tests at 6 convenient NYC & Long Island locations. Make an appointment for a PPD implant tuberculosis test at any of our locations.