KOH Test For Candida Albicans

Submitted by Nick on October 16, 2012

Candidiasis is a condition where there is a fungal infection on the skin of the human body which is caused by some species of the candida fungi. There are more than 20 different species of this type of fungus. Among these, candida albicans is the most commonly found fungus and so the KOH test for candida albicans is carried out more often than the others. Candida fungi may be found on the skin of the body in any area. A candida infection occurs when the population of the fungus grows rapidly and it begins to infest an area of the body. The condition is most likely to occur on a part of the skin that is moist and poorly ventilated. This is why one may find such infections in areas like the buttocks and the thighs. A candida infection is common in babies because of the moisture coupled with lack of ventilation in the diapers.

The KOH test for candida is a medical test used to diagnose an infection of the candida family of fungi. This KOH test for candida on skin is conducted in a laboratory and uses a sample of skin from the infected patient. The sample of skin is usually collected by scraping the skin that appears to be affected. This sample is then sent to a laboratory. In the laboratory, the sample is placed on a slide and viewed under a microscope. It is then treated with potassium hydroxide. The chemical nomenclature of this substance is KOH which is why the test is known as the KOH test for candida. The sample is then allowed to absorb KOH for a few minutes before it is viewed under the microscope. The tester may use a stain to assist with the procedure and make it easier to see the fungi present.

The KOH test for fungus is now complete. Based on the visible results, the laboratory technician will describe the fungi found, if any have been found at all. The KOH test is therefore applicable to many different types of fungal infections, not just to the candida family of fungi. However, when viewing the results of the KOH test for candida, one will see the round budding shape that is typical of the candida fungi.

The KOH test for fungus is conducted on an outpatient basis. The patient need not prepare for the test in any way. The skin may be sore after the test because of the tissue being scraped off the top of the surface of the skin.

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