Research Article| Volume 5, ISSUE 1, P167-186, March 1985

Laboratory Diagnosis of the Superficial Fungal Infections

  • Author Footnotes
    * This article first appeared in Dermatologic Clinics, Vol. 2, No. 1, January 1984, as part of a symposium on superficial fungal infections.
    Elizabeth Head
    Corresponding author: Department of Dermatology, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas 77550
    * This article first appeared in Dermatologic Clinics, Vol. 2, No. 1, January 1984, as part of a symposium on superficial fungal infections.
    Search for articles by this author
  • Author Footnotes
    * This article first appeared in Dermatologic Clinics, Vol. 2, No. 1, January 1984, as part of a symposium on superficial fungal infections.
      This paper is only available as a PDF. To read, Please Download here.
      The laboratory diagnosis of superficial fungal infections depends upon two techniques, direct microscopy and culture. Proper methods for collection of specimens for study vary with the type of infection and the body site. Microscopic examination and culture must also be fitted to the organism suspected. Instructions and illustrations are given to facilitate the proper use of these techniques by the practicing dermatologist to assure confirmation of the clinical diagnoses. Special techniques, observations, and suggestions learned by experience are included as an aid when confirmation of a suspected infection proves difficult.
      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'

      Subscribers receive full online access to your subscription and archive of back issues up to and including 2002.

      Content published before 2002 is available via pay-per-view purchase only.


      Subscribe to Clinics in Laboratory Medicine
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


        • Allen H.B.
        • Honig P.J.
        • Leyden J.J.
        • et al.
        Selenium sulfide: Adjunctive therapy for tinea capitis.
        Pediatrics. 1982; 69: 81-83
        • Campbell M.C.
        • Stewart J.L.
        The Medical Mycology Handbook.
        John Wiley & Sons, New York1980
      1. Eagleson, W. M., and Kane, J.: A Synopsis of Mycology for Dermatologists. Edition 2. Eagleson & Kane, 1981.

        • Emmons C.W.
        • Chapman C.H.
        • Utz J.P.
        Medical Mycology.
        Edition 2. Lea & Febiger, Philadelphia1970
        • English M.P.
        Comment. Nails and fungi.
        Br. J. Dermatol. 1976; 94: 697
      2. Haley, L. D., Rudolph, A. H., and Braverman, I. M.: Dermatologic Mycology Manual for Dermatologists. American Academy of Dermatology, 1976.

      3. Head, E. S., Macdonald, E. M., and Henry, J. C.: Cotton swab technique for culturing dermatophytes from skin. 1982, Program Am. Acad. Derm. p. 111.

        • Head E.S.
        • Smith E.B.
        Laboratory alert: Clues to the identification of dermatophytes as the etiologic agents of subcutaneous abscesses.
        Am. J. Med. Technol. 1981; 47: 567-568
        • Knudsen E.A.
        Growth in Sabouraud’s agar of dermatophytes obtained by conventional scraping and by stripping with vinyl tape.
        Br. J. Dermatol. 1974; 90: 163-167
        • Lewis G.M.
        • Hopper M.E.
        • Walsen J.W.
        • et al.
        An Introduction to Medical Mycology.
        Edition 4. Year Book Medical Publishers, Chicago1958
        • Mackenzie D.W.R.
        “Hairbrush diagnosis” in detection and eradication of nonfluorescent scalp ringworm.
        Br. Med. J. 1963; 2: 363-365
        • Mariat F.
        • Adan-Campos C.
        La technique du carre de tapis.
        Ann. Inst. Pasteur. 1967; 113: 666-668
        • Mullins J.F.
        • Watts F.L.
        Deep-seated pustular Trichophyton rubrum.
        Arch. Dermatol. 1957; 75: 543-546
        • Rebell G.
        • Taplin D.
        Dermatophytes: Their Recognition and Identification.
        Edition 2. University of Miami Press, Coral Cables, Florida1970
        • Rippon J.W.
        Medical Mycology. The Pathogenic Fungi and the Pathogenic Actinomycetes. Edition 2.
        W. B. Saunders Company, Philadelphia1982
        • Roberts S.O.B.
        • Mackenzie D.W.R.
        in: Rook A.R. Walkinson D.S. Textbook of Dermatology. Edition 3. Vol. 1. Blackwell Scientific Publications, Oxford1979
        • Scher R.K.
        • Ackerman A.B.
        Subtle clues to diagnosis from biopsies of nails.
        Am. J. Dermatopathol. 1980; 2: 55-57
        • Shapiro E.M.
        • Mullins J.F.
        • Pinkerton M.E.
        A direct identification of Candida albicans on Littman’s oxgall agar.
        J. Invest. Dermatol. 1956; 26: 77-80
        • Shelley W.B.
        • Wood M.G.
        New techniques for instant visualization of fungi in hair.
        J. Am. Acad. Dermatol. 1980; 2: 69-71
        • Swartz J.H.
        • Medrek T.F.
        Rapid contrast stain as a diagnostic aid for fungus infections.
        Arch. Dermatol. 1969; 99: 494-497
        • Taplin D.
        • Zaias N.
        • Rebell G.
        • et al.
        Isolation and recognition of dermatophytes on a new medium (DTM).
        Arch. Dermatol. 1969; 99: 203-209