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    TB and Refugee Health Services Branch

    MC 1939
    P.O. Box 149347
    Austin, TX 78756-9347

    Phone: 512-533-3000
    Fax: 512-533-3167

    Email the TB Program

TB Statistics


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The Big Picture

In 2013, 1,222 cases of tuberculosis (TB) were reported in Texas, a rate of 4.6 per 100,000 population. TB can affect anyone but is more likely to be diagnosed in people born in a foreign country where TB is prevalent, people living with diabetes or HIV/AIDS, the homeless, and health care workers. Alcohol abuse is associated with 17% of TB cases and 10% of cases are diagnosed in detention facilities.

TB is curable with proper treatment. However, some strains of TB are resistant to the drugs used for treatment. In 2013, six people in Texas were diagnosed with multi-drug resistant TB. One case of extensively drug resistant TB, a type of TB that is resistant to most drugs typically used for treatment, was reported in Texas.

In Texas, 51% of reported TB cases in 2013 were among Hispanics, 19% were among African Americans, 14% percent were among Whites, and 16% were among Asians. TB rates are higher along the Texas-Mexico border. Co-infection with TB and diabetes is also more common along the border than in the rest of the state. TB/HIV co-infection is more commonly found in urban areas of Texas.


Risk Factors Associated with TB Cases Reported in Texas in 2013

Tuberculosis Screening

In recent years, blood tests known as Interferon Gamma Release Assays (IGRAs) have been developed to screen for tuberculosis (TB). White blood cells release interferon gamma (IFN-g) in response to contact with TB antigens. If the test result is positive, there is an immune response indicating the presence of TB bacteria.

Counties with the highest number of TB Cases: Harris 287, Dallas 191, Bexar 75, Tarrant 70, Hidalgo 64, Cameron 53, El Paso 49, Travis 41, Webb 35, Collin 30.


There are currently two Federal Drug Administration (FDA) approved blood tests on the market: the QuantiFERON®–TB Gold In-Tube test (QFT-GIT) and the T-SPOT®.TB test (T-Spot). The Department of State Health Services Laboratory Services Section Molecular and Serological Analysis Group processes specimens for the QFT-GIT test. Although the tuberculin skin test has been the conventional screening method in Texas, regional and local tuberculosis programs are adopting the IGRA test as the standard tool to screen for TB.



Differences between TST and IGRA tests for TB infection




Single patient visit



Test results



Results affected by Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine



Tuberculosis Treatment

Not everyone infected with the bacteria that cause tuberculosis becomes sick. Those who do have symptoms – such as a cough, fever, night sweats, weight loss, chest pain, or fatigue – are most likely suffering from TB disease. Those with TB disease may be infectious.  Prompt treatment is essential to end symptoms and prevent disability or death. Those who are infected with TB bacteria but do not have any symptoms and have a normal chest x-ray have latent TB infection (LTBI). Those with LTBI still require treatment to decrease the risk of future TB disease.

DSHS provides TB treatment medications to public health clinics across Texas. These clinics treat patients with TB disease and LTBI. Also, people who are presumed to have TB (TB suspects) may be given treatment while their clinicians perform further testing to confirm or rule out TB disease.

Treating TB disease generally requires up to four medications given for six months. Treating individuals with drug-resistant TB requires costly medications that may be used for an extended period of time.  LTBI is generally treated with one medication for 9-12 months. Treatment of suspects varies according to the outcome of their diagnostic tests.


Texas Tuberculosis Data 

  • Cases and rates by:
    2010-2014PDF Icon (528 KB)
        2009-2013PDF Icon (182 KB)
        2008-2012PDF Icon (193 KB)
        2007-2011PDF Icon (260 KB)

    Health Service Region
        2009-2013PDF Icon (53 KB)

    Border County (32 Texas-Mexico Border Counties)
        2009-2013PDF Icon (21 KB)

  • Proportion of cases with Risk Factors in select counties:
        2013PDF Icon (42 KB)
        2010PDF Icon (16 KB)
        2009PDF Icon (16 KB)

  • Cases and percentages by Health Service Region and Race/Ethnicity
        2013PDF Icon (9 KB)
        2010PDF Icon (12 KB)
        2009PDF Icon (12 KB)

  • Counties with Higher than Average Incidence
       2011-2013External Link Icon


Last updated July 28, 2015
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