Page Banner
QuantiFERON®-TB Gold Plus (QFT-Plus)

QUANTIFERON-TB GOLD Plus (FOR TB SCREENING)

QuantiFERON®-TB Gold Plus (QFT-Plus) is a simple blood test that aids in the detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacteria which causes tuberculosis (TB). Like its predecessor, QFT-Plus is an interferon gamma release assay, commonly known as an IGRA, and is a modern alternative to the tuberculin skin test (TST). Unlike the TST, QFT-Plus is a controlled laboratory test that requires only one patient visit and works on patients who have previously been vaccinated against TB with the Bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccination.

How is the test performed?

A simple blood test

Email me a patient package

Submit

QuantiFERON®–TB Gold Plus (QFT-Plus) is a simple blood test for Tuberculosis (TB), an air-born and highly contagious infectious disease.

While TB most frequently affects the lungs (pulmonary TB) it can also cause disease in any part of the body, such as the lymph nodes, bones, brain, organs and eyes. TB is a serious disease that kills about 1.5 million people each year worldwide.

TB is spread when a person with active, infectious TB disease coughs, sneezes, or spits, releasing droplets containing TB bacteria into the air, which are then inhaled by someone else.

Not everyone who is exposed to TB bacteria will develop an infection, and not all of those who become infected will develop symptoms of TB disease, which is why getting tested is so important. Those who are infected but have no symptoms are said to have a latent TB infection (LTBI), while those who do become sick have an active infection.

 If you have latent TB, you do not feel sick but you could become sick at some point if your LTBI becomes an active TB infection. This happens to about 10% of people with untreated latent TB infections, who are otherwise in good health. A greater percentage of people with compromised immune systems, such as those suffering from malnutrition, tobacco users, those with diabetes, and especially those with HIV infection, are at greater risk of developing active TB disease.

With the QFT test you only need to visit LifeLabs once to give a blood sample.

With the skin test, you need to plan two visits to your healthcare provider: one to administer the test and one to check for results.

The QFT-Plus test is better at helping your healthcare provider determine  if you have TB, saves you time, and provides more accurate results than traditional skin prick testing.

 There are no risks to getting this test done. All you need to do is get blood drawn at a select LifeLabs location in your province.

QFT-Plus can be used in place of the skin test and is suitable for anyone who has:

  1. Had contact with someone known to have TB
  2. Been to a country with high rates of TB
  3. A weak immune system, such as:
    1. Those with HIV infection
    2. Those with chronic underlying conditions, including diabetes and kidney disease
    3. Organ transplant recipients and others on immunosuppressant drugs
    4. Pregnant women
    5. The elderly
  4. Started some types of medications

Additionally, people who work with, or are part of groups with high rates of infection, such as IV drug users, or confined populations, such as hospitalized patients, prisoners, and residents of nursing homes can also use this test.

QFT-Plus works in people who have been previously vaccinated against TB, and can also be used to confirm a positive skin test result.

The fee for this test is C$95.00. It is not covered by the provincial health insurance plans, but it may be covered by extended health insurance plans.

QFT is available at select LifeLabs locations in Ontario and BC.  You must bring a completed test requisition from your healthcare provider.

The QFT-Plus test will help your healthcare provider determine if you have TB. It will show one of two results:

  • Positive – you will probably have TB. However, your healthcare provider needs to see you before confirming that you have TB
  • Negative- you probably do not have TB.

Occasionally, the results are not clear. If that happens, your healthcare provider may have you take the test again.

It usually takes one to two weeks for LifeLabs to complete the test. Your healthcare provider will inform you when to expect results.

If you have any questions about latent TB or the QFT-Plus test, please speak with your healthcare provider.

  1. Qiagen, QuantiFERON®–TB Gold Plus product information
  2. World Health Organization’s Fact Sheet on Tuberculosis

Clinical

Utility

QFT-Plus is a highly accurate, single visit IGRA test for screening potentially TB-infected patients, and accurately diagnosing Latent TB Infections (LTBI).

Ordering

In Ontario, the healthcare provider needs to indicate ‘QFT-Plus’ in the ‘Other Tests’ section of the standard MOH requisition form.

In British Columbia, the healthcare provider must order this test on the specialized, patient-pay QFT-Plus requisition form.

Patient Instructions

Patient needs to bring the completed requisition form to a Patient Service Centre.

Turnaround

Time

Test results will be available within 2 weeks.

Cost

This test is not currently covered by provincial health plans, but may be covered by the patient’s private insurance.

QuantiFERON®–TB Gold Plus (QFT-Plus) is the updated version of the QuantiFERON®–TB Gold (QTF) test.

Like its predecessor, QFT-Plus is a simple blood test that aids in the diagnosis of exposure to Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacteria which causes tuberculosis (TB). QFT-Plus is an interferon gamma release assay, commonly known as an IGRA, and is a modern alternative to the tuberculin skin test (TST). Unlike the TST, QFT-Plus is a controlled laboratory test that requires only one patient visit and works on patients who have previously been vaccinated against TB with the Bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccination.

Compared to QFT, the QFT-Plus test is optimized with innovative TB-specific antigens that elicit both CD4 and CD8 T cell responses – giving a more comprehensive assessment of the patient’s immune response to TB infection.

Along with accurately detecting active TB, QFT-Plus also diagnoses Latent TB Infection (LTBI) which is an asymptomatic infection, and is believed to affect over one-quarter of the global population. LTBI is a state of persistent immune response with evidence of clinically active TB. Approximately 5-15% of infected individuals will progress to active TBI if not diagnosed and treated. This progression is called the reactivation of LTBI.

QFT-Plus measures the amount of interferon gamma that is released when infected white blood cells in a blood sample come into contact with specific antigens of M. tuberculosis. The test is simple, fast and considered the most clinically tested and proven. The use of whole blood in QFT-Plus makes T cell incubation simple and fast, and reduces turn-around time (TAT). It is simple as there is no lymphocyte isolation, washing, counting, diluting, or culturing.

The QFT-Plus Test can be used be used for individuals who:

  • Have had contact with persons diagnosed with active pulmonary TB,
  • Are at increased risk of progression to active TB disease due to impaired immunity,
  • Have radiographic evidence of old, healed TB without history of treatment and
  • Have an increased risk for LTBI due to injection-drug use.

Additionally, the following individuals should be screened for tuberculosis:

  • Foreign-born persons and visitors from TB-endemic countries, especially immigrants who have arrived in the last two years
  • Residents and employees of prisons and jails
  • Individuals eligible for LTBI surveillance programs such as health-care workers, aid workers and military personnel
  • Screening for LTBI is viewed as precautionary in management of patients with the following inflammatory diseases: rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, and Crohn’s disease.

The QFT-Plus test works on patients who have previously been vaccinated against TB with the Bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccination. QFT-Plus requires only one patient visit to a LifeLabs location, has a high sensitivity (>94%) and high specificity (>97%) which reduces unnecessary evaluations (labs, X-rays).

QFT is approved by both FDA and Health Canada as a diagnostic test to detect Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection.

The whole blood sample is collected in 4 specialized tubes that enable immediate exposure of the white blood cells to highly specific TB antigens (ESAT-6, CFP-10 and proprietary CD8 antigens). Only 1 ml of whole blood is required per tube.

The QFT-Plus results are reported qualitatively as negative or positive for the bacteria, as well as quantitatively with a numerical value (reported in IU/mL). The numerical value indicates the amount of interferon gamma that is released when infected blood cells are exposed to specific antigens of M.tuberculosis.

In healthy persons who have a low likelihood both of M. tuberculosis infection and of progression to active tuberculosis if infected, a single positive QFT-Plus result should not be taken as reliable evidence of M. tuberculosis infection. Repeat testing, with either the initial test or a different test, may be considered on a case-by-case basis.

In Ontario, the test may be ordered on the standard OHIP requisition. In BC, a specific QFT-Plus requisition is required to be filled and signed by the healthcare provider. Your patient must bring the requisition form signed by you to one of our locations.

Please note that this test is offered in select LifeLabs locations only. To order this test for your patient, please advise them of the price (C$95.00) and have them book an appointment at one of our select locations, listed below.  

The QFT test is available in select LifeLabs locations in Ontario; please refer to the table below for more details.

Barrie 480 Huronia, Suite 201
Belleville 210 Dundas St. E.
Brampton 36 Vodden, Suite 200
Brampton 9780 Bramalea Rd.
Brampton 40 Finchgate Blvd.
Burlington 3155 Harvester Rd.
Cambridge 697 Coronation Blvd.
Chatham 857 Grand Ave. W., Suite 106
Etobicoke 190 Sherway, Suite 108
Guelph 85 Norfolk St., Suite 101
Hamilton 25 Charlton Ave. E.
Hamilton 280 Queenston Rd.
Hamilton 989 Fennell Ave. E.
Ingersoll 45 King St. E.
Kingston 791 Princess, Unit 102
Kitchener 564 Belmont, Suite 105
London 746 Baseline Rd., Suite 101
London 1151 Richmond St.
Markham 379 Church St., Suite 111
Milton 470 Bronte Rd., Suite 106
Minden 6 McPherson St.
Mississauga 2300 Eglinton Ave., Suite G-04
Mississauga 101 The Queensway, Suite 138
Nepean 1 Centrepointe Dr.

North York 20 Wynford Dr., Unit 107
Newmarket 679 Davis Dr., Suite 123
North York 1333 Sheppard Ave. E.
North York 4949 Bathurst, Rm. 217
Oakville 1235 Trafalgar Rd.
Orleans 1220 Place d’Orleans Dr.
Oshawa 245 King St. W.
Ottawa 267 O’Connor St.
Ottawa 1919 Riverside Dr., Suite 105
Paris 238 Grand River St. N.
Peterborough 849 Alexander Crt., Suite 106
Picton 389 Main St.
Rexdale 115 Humber College Blvd.
Richmond Hill 250 Harding Blvd., Suite B03
Sarnia 429 Exmouth St., Suite 3
Scarborough 2330 Kennedy Rd., Suite 209
Sudbury 65 Larch St.
Thunder Bay 1040 Oliver Rd., Suite 101
Toronto 2 Champagne Dr., Unit C6
Toronto 340 College St., Suite 401
Thorold 3460 Schmon Pkwy,
Toronto 2221 Keele St., Unit 104, Toronto
Toronto 55 Queen St. E.
Windsor 6505 Tecumseh Rd. E.

  1. Qiagen, QuantiFERON®–TB Gold Plus product information
  2. Pai et. al. Canadian Tuberculosis Standards 7th Edition: 2014 – Diagnosis of latent Tuberculosis infection
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Guidelines for Using the QuantiFERON®-TB Test for Diagnosing Latent Mycobacterium tuberculosis Infection, 2012
  4. CDC. Updated guidelines for using gamma release assays to detect m. tuberculosis infection. MMWR. 2010;59(RR05):1-25
  5. City of Toronto, Tuberculosis Information for Healthcare Providers: Management of Latent Tuberculosis Infection and Active Disease – Information for Health Professionals
  6. Latent tuberculosis infection: An overview – CCDR: Volume 43-3/4, March 2, 2017: Tuberculosis (TB)
  7. World Health Organization’s Fact Sheet on Tuberculosis

People who looked at the QuantiFERON®-TB Gold Plus (QFT-Plus) were also interested in:

Featured
Services
Reaching a definitive diagnosis of hypertension

24-Hour Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring (ABPM)

Take the guesswork out of your diet

IgG Food Sensitivity Testing

Symptoms associated with food sensitivities develop slowly over time and can create inflammation and contribute to symptoms of a variety of diseases. The RMA FST™ IgG Food Sensitivity test can help identify potential food sensitivities and take the guesswork out of your diet.
Colorectal Cancer Screening

Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT)

FIT is a safe and painless at-home cancer screening test. FIT checks someone’s stool (poop) for tiny amounts of blood, which could be caused by colon cancer and some pre-cancerous polyps (growths in the colon or rectum that can turn into cancer over time). When colon cancer is found and treated early, the chances of successful treatment are better.
Colorectal Cancer Screening

Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT)

FIT is a safe and painless stool-based test used for screening people at average risk of developing colorectal cancer. FIT checks for the presence of occult blood in the stool, which can be an early sign of colorectal cancer and/or pre-cancerous lesions. When colorectal cancer is found and treated early, the chances of successful treatment are better. Healthcare providers should fax the FIT requisition to 1-833-676-1427
(Omega 3 Score)

Omega-3 Fatty Acid

The Omega 3 ScoreTM Test quantifies the fatty acids present in a sample of a patient’s whole blood. Specific levels of long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, specifically Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in the blood have been associated with a lower risk of sudden death from cardiovascular disease (CVD).
Helping Naturopathic Doctors Gain a Better View of the Health Status of their Patients

Patient Assessment Panels

Patient Assessment Panels enable you to provide your Naturopathic Doctor with a complete picture of your health. Now you can access the blood work required to make informed decisions on how to be your healthiest you!
1. Convenient
2. Comprehensive
3. Cost-effective
Personalized Risk Assessment of Prostate Cancer

SelectMDx Testing

Learning you have elevated PSA can be alarming news, but elevated PSA does not mean you have clinically significant disease and require a biopsy or treatment. SelectMDx is a novel decision support tool and provides your urologist with additional important information on the likelihood of finding aggressive cancer upon biopsy.
Fecal Calprotectin Testing

Differentiating Between
IBS and IBD

Canada has one of the highest incidence and prevalence rates of inflammatory bowel disease and irritable bowel syndrome in the world. With symptoms of these two conditions appearing similar, Fecal Calprotectin testing can provide an accurate diagnosis in many patients with chronic diarrhea without the need of doing invasive diagnostic procedures.
Know Your Risk for Heart Attacks

PULS (Protein Unstable Lesion Signature Test) Cardiac Test™

The second leading cause of death among Canadians, heart attacks are often a silent killer with no signs or symptoms before they strike. Often resulting from coronary heart disease, heart attacks can be predicted and even prevented if you know and manage your risk.
Early Detection of Prostate Cancer

Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) Test

One in seven men in Canada will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime. The third leading cause of cancer death, when prostate cancer is detected early, the more likely it can be successfully treated.
Determine your risk of bone fractures

Osteoporosis

Known as the “silent thief”, osteoporosis is responsible for the loss of bone mass without obvious symptoms until a bone is broken. By knowing your risk through a Serum CTX Test, you can prevent, delay or reduce bone loss.
Early Detection of Cervical Cancer

HPV Testing

About 75% of sexually active women will get a least one HPV infection in their lifetime. With HPV the primary cause of cervical cancer, the HPV test detects the presence of high-risk HPV strain(s).
Diagnosing Celiac Disease

Celiac Disease

Celiac disease can arise at any age creating damage to your intestines and starving your body of critical nutrients. With a range of symptoms commonly associated with other conditions, knowing if you are celiac, or simply have a gluten allergy or intolerance, is key to ensuring you’re on the right path to health.
Detecting Rheumatoid Arthritis

Anti-CCP

The daily pain, stiffness and swelling of rheumatoid arthritis can go undiagnosed for months causing permanent damage to your body. Diagnosing rheumatoid arthritis at its earliest stages can prevent damage and improve long-term quality of life.
Fertility Test

Anti-Müllerian Hormone (AMH)

With one in six couples across Canada experiencing difficulty in becoming pregnant, AMH levels can provide valuable insight into predicting a response for IVF treatment.
Vitamin Levels

25-Hydroxy Vitamin D Test

Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium and phosphorus and is essential
for proper growth and healthy teeth and bones throughout your life.
Page Banner

LifeLabs Comes to You!

Price

Only $60 for up to three people of your choice serviced at the same location and appointment time.

Services offered

Blood tests, ECG monitoring, Holter monitoring

Locations

Now serving all of Toronto and, select areas in York, Peel and Halton regions, Newmarket and more!