IN A RECENT publication Kligman, Pillsbury, and Mescon reported on the superiority of the basic fuchsin staining technique (Hotchkiss-McManus stain) over the traditional potassium hydroxide clearing method in the diagnosis of ringworm infections and moniliasis.1 They examined 186 patients with dermatoses which clinically suggested fungous infections of the glabrous skin, the feet, and the nails. The KOH specimens revealed the presence of fungi in 48 cases, or 25.8%, while the staining method showed fungi in 60 cases, or 32.3%, of the 186 cases in which examination was made.
Two essential steps are involved in the Hotchkiss-McManus staining procedure. First, the polysaccharides present in the cell walls of fungi are transformed into polyaldehydes by means of periodic acid. Second, a deep red color develops in the areas containing such aldehydes in the presence of leucofuchsin (Schiff aldehyde reagent), so that the fungous elements will stand out sharply against
MUSKATBLIT E, TASCHDJIAN CL, FRANKS AG, Furnari D. HOTCHKISS-McMANUS STAIN VERSUS CLEARING IN KOH IN THE DIAGNOSIS OF SUPERFICIAL MYCOSES. AMA Arch Derm Syphilol. 1953;67(5):507–509. doi:10.1001/archderm.1953.01540050071014