Case #348 – May, 2013

A 24-year-old refugee from Thailand was being treated for tuberculosis by a local health department. Sputum specimens were collected at regular intervals to monitor the treatment progress. Interesting objects (Figures A and B) were observed in a digested sputum specimen collected approximately six months after arrival in the U.S. The objects were seen in low numbers and measured on average 100 micrometers long by 60 micrometers wide. Images of the objects were captured and sent to the DPDx Team for diagnostic assistance. What is your diagnosis? Based on what criteria?

Figure A

Figure B

This case and images were kindly provided by the Kentucky Department of Health, State Health Laboratory.

Images presented in the DPDx case studies are from specimens submitted for diagnosis or archiving. On rare occasions, clinical histories given may be partly fictitious.

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