A fungal smear test (KOH test) is often performed to assess the degree of fungal infection as well as to confirm that that the patient is indeed suffering from fungal infection. The test enables doctors to determine if the patient is indeed suffering from fungal infection and enables them to rule out other skin disorders such as eczema and psoriasis. This test is used to both identify and treat the disorder effectively; further panel of tests can be used to determine the best course of treatment for the fungal infection so that the same is treated effectively.
The KOH test does not require any special prep; rather you would be required to wear short sleeves and shorts, to enable easy access to the affected area. The doctor in charge would ask you to expose the part of your body that seems inflamed, or itchy and will examine the area in question. After a visual examination, if the doctor is unable to confirm the fungal infection, then he would prescribe a battery of tests, starting with the KOH test or fungal smear test to confirm the diagnosis. The test procedure is straightforward and requires little to no additional preparation on your part. You should receive the KOH results within a matter of few hours.
The fungal smear test (KOH) test is mainly used to help identify whether you have fungal infection or happen to suffer from another dermatological issue altogether. Moreover, this test is quite effective in enabling doctors to determine if fungal cells are present or not. A normal KOH result means that no fungal cells could be located and therefore you do not have a fungal infection. An abnormal test indicates the presence of fungal cells and fungal infection.
After a brief examination, the doctor would then scrape a few skin cells onto a glass slide, after which he would dissolve the scrapings in a solution of potassium hydroxide. The doctor would first clean the area with a tropical solution, in most cases, alcohol He would then scrape a few skin cells, onto a glass slide, and add in a small amount of potassium hydroxide solution
The potassium hydroxide solution should dissolve the healthy skin cells while leaving behind fungal cells. The KOH test can help determine your diagnosis or whether you happen to be suffering from another skin disorder. The results should be available within a matter of a few hours and your doctor should be able to advise you on the course of treatment to treat your fungal infection.