What is the role of lab studies in the workup of cutaneous candidiasis?

Updated: Jan 17, 2020
  • Author: Richard Harold "Hal" Flowers, IV, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Answer

KOH preparation is the easiest and most cost-effective method for diagnosing cutaneous candidiasis, but its use is not sufficient in the absence of other supporting clinical evidence.

Culture from an intact pustule, skin biopsy tissue, or desquamated skin can help to support the diagnosis.

Microscopic examination of skin scrapings prepared with calcofluor white stain is a simple way of detecting yeasts and pseudohyphae of C albicans. C albicans binds nonspecifically to polysaccharides found in fungal cell walls and produces a distinct bright color in a pattern characteristic for the organism when viewed under a fluorescence microscope.


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