Diagnostic Tests

Fungal Culture Corneal Scraping


Fungal Culture Corneal Scraping

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What is this test?

Fungal culture corneal scraping is performed on a sample of the corneal scrape to check for the fungal growth on it. This test helps to know whether you have corneal fungal infections or not

What are corneal fungal infections?

Fungal organisms are found anywhere in the environment. They exist as two forms yeasts and molds. The fungal organisms that exhibit a temperature-dependent switch between these two forms are known as dimorphic. These organisms can cause infections in individuals with poor immunity.

Candida species are the most common form of yeasts that cause fungal infections. These fungal organisms cause bloodstream infection with involvement of other organs. Cryptococcus species are another form of yeasts which can cause infections especially in individuals with poor immunity. Aspergillus genus members are a form of molds which can cause diseases and can trigger the allergic reactions in many individuals. Rhizopus, Mucor, Rhizomucor etc are other forms of molds that rarely cause infection. Histoplasmosis, blastomycosis, sporotrichosis, coccidioidomycosis, paracoccidioidomycosis, and chromoblastomycosis are fungi that are dimorphic in nature. These fungal organisms exist as yeast form in infected individuals (host) and as a mold form in the environment.

The cornea is a clear outermost layer of the eye. It helps to refract or bend light. An infection on a cornea occurs when it gets damaged due to any foreign substances, or from germs, such as bacteria, virus, or fungi. Fungal infections of the cornea caused by any fungal organisms are known as fungal keratitis or keratomycosis. It can occur in normal individuals and also who have poor immunity. The signs and symptoms of corneal infection are mild fever, redness, pain, and swelling of affected eye, low vision, eye discharge, tearing, an itchy or burning feeling in the eye, etc. Fusarium species, Aspergillus species, Acremonium species, Candida species, Cladosporium species, Curvularia, etc are the common fungal organisms that cause corneal infections.

Why this test is performed?

This test is performed as part of routine health screening or to determine the presence of fungal growth on a sample of the corneal scrape. Your doctor may ask to perform this test if you experience any signs and symptoms of corneal infections such as mild fever, redness, pain, and swelling of affected eye, low vision, eye discharge, tearing, an itchy or burning feeling in the eye, etc. This test is also performed to monitor and evaluate the treatment effectiveness in individuals receiving treatment for corneal fungal infections. However, your doctor may ask to perform a susceptibility testing on the fungi isolated from this culture test to determine the antifungal treatment.

Test Preparation

Inform your doctor if you are on any medications, have any allergies or underlying medical conditions before your Fungal Culture Corneal Scraping. Your doctor will give specific instructions depending on your condition on how to prepare for Fungal Culture Corneal Scraping.

No specific preparation is required for this test. However, follow all the instructions given by your healthcare provider.

Understanding your test results

The test results may be vary depending on gender, age, health conditions, and other factors.

If the culture test is positive it may indicate the growth of fungal organisms on the sample of the corneal scrape. It may indicate the presence of corneal fungal infections. However, a few more additional tests may also be performed depending on the suspected cause and typical results, along with the physical symptoms to diagnose the exact infection.

If the culture test is negative it means no growth of fungal organisms is detected from the sample of the corneal scrape.

Based on the test results, your doctor may advise you appropriate medical treatments or further diagnostic tests.

GenderAge groupsValue
UNISEXAll age groupsThe growth observed depends on the type of the fungal organism that grows
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