Principles and Procedures for Detection and Culture of Fungi in Clinical Specimens
|Publication Date:||1 January 2021|
This guideline provides recommendations to laboratories on procedures for collecting, processing, and handling fungal specimens and interpreting direct stain examinations and culture results. In addition, methods for direct or indirect detection from patient specimens, such as antigen, antibody, and molecular testing, are included. Because the relative importance of any fungus isolated from a patient specimen depends on the pathogenic potential of the fungus and the clinical setting in which it is isolated, these issues as well as factors to consider regarding the isolate's clinical significance are discussed.
Fungal taxonomy has been updated in this edition of M54. Direct molecular methods to detect fungi in clinical specimens are also discussed, such as the use of magnetic resonance to detect Candida spp. in blood and the use of PCR to detect Pneumocystis jirovecii in respiratory specimens, other fungal pathogens, and the emerging pathogen Candida auris. This guideline considers individualized quality control plan (IQCP) issues related to fungal media and includes a table listing the differential diagnosis of various yeasts and yeast-like organisms on direct examination. Antigen and antibody detection of fungi and the extent of identification needed to provide clinical and therapeutic guidance are also discussed.
The intended users of this guideline are laboratorians who process specimens for fungal culture, perform fungal direct microscopic examinations, and/or perform antibody, antigen, or molecular testing for fungi. Antifungal susceptibility testing methods (see CLSI documents M27,1 M38,2 M44,3 M51,4 M60,5 and M616) are not discussed in this guideline. Although Nocardia spp. and other aerobic actinomycetes can be encountered growing on mycology media, methods for detecting these organisms are not discussed in this guideline. Additionally, definitive fungal identification from culture growth (eg, examination of cellulose tape preparation, matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionizatio