Rapid diagnosis of Legionnaires' disease by bronchoalveolar lavage

W. R. Kohorst, S. A. Schonfeld, J. E. Macklin, M. E. Whitcomb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Legionella pneumophila has, in recent years, emerged as a common pulmonary pathogen in the normal and immunocompromised patient (ICP). Making a specific etiologic diagnosis of pneumonia in the latter group is a common clinical dilemma often complicated by poor specimen availability and risks of invasive procedures. Improved staining and isolation techniques for L pneumophila would suggest that early diagnosis could be possible if adequate specimens were available. This report summarizes our experience with bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) with which we have diagnosed L pneumophila in eight immunocompromised patients, well in advance of more traditional methods. On the basis of this experience, we would advocate early BAL in the ICP as a rapid, safe, moderately sensitive and specific diagnostic test to aid in the identification of L pneumophila.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)186-190
Number of pages5
JournalCHEST
Volume84
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1983
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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