Saturday, November 10, 2018

"Crushed ping pong balls"

Q: "Crushed ping pong balls" reminds you of which disease? 

Answer: PCP (Pneumocystis pneumonia)

 The diagnosis of PCP can be definitively confirmed by histological identification of the causative organism in sputum or bronchio-alveolar lavage (BAL). Special staining will show the characteristic cysts. The cysts resemble crushed ping-pong balls and are present in aggregates of 2 to 8. In contrast, Histoplasma or Cryptococcus, typically do not form aggregates of spores or cells.



 Jeong Hyeon Lee, Ji Young Lee, Mi Ran Shin, Hyeong Kee Ahn, Chul Whan Kim, Insun Kim - Immunohistochemical Identification of Pneumocystis jirovecii in Liquid-based Cytology of Bronchoalveolar Lavage - Nine Cases Report -, The Korean Journal of Pathology 2011; 45: 115-118

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