Fungal culture sputum is performed on a sample of sputum to check for the fungal growth on it. This test helps to know whether the lungs or respiratory tract are infected by fungus or not.
What are lung 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.
Sputum is the thick mucus that you cough up from your lungs. It occurs when the passages between the mouth and lungs get irritated due to any disease conditions or infections. Individuals with lung fungal infections or any respiratory fungal infections may show the presence of growth of fungal organisms in the sputum. These infections start with the accidental inhalation of microscopic fungal spores. They are less common and mainly affects the individuals with poor immunity. The affected people will experience mild to moderate flu-like symptoms such as fever, chills, cough, chest pain, shortness of breath, headaches, nausea, fast heartbeat, etc. Cryptococcus species, Candida species, Aspergillus species, Blastomyces dermatitidis, Histoplasma capsulatum, etc are the common fungal organisms that cause lung 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 sputum. Your doctor may ask to perform this test if you experience any signs and symptoms of a lung fungal infections or any respiratory fungal infections such as fever, chills, cough, chest pain, shortness of breath, headaches, nausea, fast heartbeat, etc. This test is also performed to monitor and evaluate the treatment effectiveness in individuals receiving treatment for lung fungal infections or any respiratory 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.
Inform your doctor if you are on any medications, have any allergies or underlying medical conditions before your Fungal Culture Sputum. Your doctor will give specific instructions depending on your condition on how to prepare for Fungal Culture Sputum.
No specific preparation is required for this test. However, follow all the instructions given by your healthcare provider.
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 sputum. It may indicate the presence of lung fungal infections or any respiratory 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 sputum.
Based on the test results, your doctor may advise you appropriate medical treatments or further diagnostic tests.
|UNISEX||All age groups||The growth observed depends on the type of the fungal organism that grows|