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April 1983

Rapid Diagnosis of Pulmonary Coccidioidomycosis: Cytologic v Potassium Hydroxide Preparations

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Internal Medicine (Drs Warlick and Quan) and Pathology (Dr Sobonya), and the Division of Respiratory Sciences (Drs Quan, Warlick, and Sobonya), University of Arizona College of Medicine, Tucson.

Arch Intern Med. 1983;143(4):723-725. doi:10.1001/archinte.1983.00350040113014

• In 26 patients with culture-proved pulmonary coccidioidomycosis, cytologic preparations of respiratory secretions were significantly more sensitive (38.5%) than potassium hydroxide (KOH) preparations (15.4%) in identifying spherules of Coccidioides immitis. Those patients able to produce sputum or having multiple-lobe pneumonitis on chest roentgenogram appeared to be more likely to have spherules identified in the sputum by either technique. In the absence of sputum production or multiple-lobe pneumonitis, neither cytologic nor KOH preparations were likely to disclose spherules. Because of its greater sensitivity, a cytologic preparation should be examined in addition to a KOH preparation when pulmonary coccidioidomycosis is a clinical consideration.

(Arch Intern Med 1983;143:723-725)

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