Trial design of a prospective multicenter diagnostic accuracy study of a point-of-care test for the detection of Taenia solium taeniosis and neurocysticercosis in hospital-based settings in Tanzania

SOLID Consortium

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Taenia solium diagnosis is challenging as trained personnel, good diagnostic tools, and infrastructure is lacking in resource-poor areas. This paper aims to describe the study trial design adopted to evaluate a newly developed rapid point-of-care test that simultaneously detects taeniosis and neurocysticercosis (TS POC) in three district hospitals in Tanzania. The two-stage design included three types of patients: patients with specific neurological signs and symptoms (group 1); patients with complaints compatible with intestinal worm infections (group 2); patients with other symptom(s) (group 3). For group 1, all patients were tested using the TS POC test (stage 1), after which all positive, and a subset of negative, patients were selected for laboratory reference tests, clinical examination, and a brain computed tomography (CT) scan (stage 2). For groups 2 and 3, a similar design was adopted, but clinical examination and a brain CT scan (stage 2) were only performed in patients who were TS POC test-positive for cysticercosis. Due to the lack of a gold standard, a Bayesian approach was used to determine test accuracy for taeniosis and cysticercosis. For neurocysticercosis, a composite case definition was used as the reference standard. If successful, this study will help the future developments (commercialization and implementation) of the rapid test and improve patient management and disease prevention.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1528
Issue number9
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Taenia solium
  • taeniosis
  • cysticercosis
  • hospital-based settings
  • point-of-care test
  • rapid tests
  • diagnostics

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