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Merits and Pitfalls of Currently Used Diagnostic Tools in Mycetoma

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Michael Goodfellow



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Treatment of mycetoma depends on the causative organism and since many organisms, both actinomycetes (actinomycetoma) and fungi (eumycetoma), are capable of producing mycetoma, an accurate diagnosis is crucial. Currently, multiple diagnostic tools are used to determine the extent of infections and to identify the causative agents of mycetoma. These include various imaging, cytological, histopathological, serological, and culture techniques; phenotypic characterisation; and molecular diagnostics. In this review, we summarize these techniques and identify their merits and pitfalls in the identification of the causative agents of mycetoma and the extent of the disease. We also emphasize the fact that there is no ideal diagnostic tool available to identify the causative agents and that future research should focus on the development of new and reliable diagnostic tools.

Publication metadata

Author(s): van de Sande WWJ, Fahal AH, Goodfellow M, Mahgoub E, Welsh O, Zijlstra EE

Publication type: Review

Publication status: Published

Journal: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases

Year: 2014

Volume: 8

Issue: 7

Print publication date: 01/07/2014

ISSN (electronic): 1935-2735



DOI: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0002918