MICROBIOLOGY PRAX REVIEWER:
KOH (potassium hydroxide) Mount
is a rapid method for the demonstration of fungal forms in clinical material-
facilitates the clearing of specimen forenhanced microscopic observation without altering the fungal elements.-
when a specimen if placed in KOH, thespecimen will dissolve faster than the fungisince the chitinous cell walls of the fungi willprotect it from disintegration
Collection of Specimen
Clean the area with 70% alcohol andallow to air dry2.
With a sharp scalpel, scrape theepidermal scales at the active edgeof the skin or nail lesion.
Place specimen on the glass slide2.
2 drops of 10% KOH forskin scrapings and 20% KOH fornails and hair specimen3.
Put a cover slip and let the mount set for 10
30mins. If material ishard (nail or tissue), heat the slidegently by passing it over the flameonce of twice. Do not overheat orKOH will crystallize.4.
Examine the mount under themicroscope. Note the presence of granules, hypal elements, spores oryeast cells.
Demo Slide:Two advantages of KOH preparation
Facilitates clearing of specimens for enhancedmicroscopic observation without alteringfungal elements2.
Simple, cheap and rapid
Two disadvantages of KOH preparation:
Gives an idea about the presence of hypalelements, but cannot distinguish different fungi2.
Preparation cannot be kept for too long
Three factors that may affect the results of aKOH preparation:
KOH droplet size3.
KOH indicationExercise 11:
Microscopic Morphology of Fungal Culture
Identification of fungi is often accomplishedby isolation organisms on appropriate culturemedia and observing their morphologicalcharacters
Accurate Identification of filamentous fungi isbased on the microscopic examination of sporulating parts of a colony