Serologic testing for Candida is used to diagnose and monitor patients with candidiasis.
Candidiasis, also known as moniliasis, is caused by the yeast Candida albicans. It affects mucous membranes, skin, and nails. This microorganism is a fungus and can normally be found in small numbers, in vaginal secretions, the intestine, and the oral cavity. Under certain circumstances, the growth of the microorganism can occur rapidly. Such cases include long-term antibiotic therapy, corticosteroid therapy, pregnancy, contraceptives, diabetes, and immunosuppressed patients. Oral candidiasis can often be the first sign of AIDS. The serological test for Candida is used in conjunction with histological tests and cultures to confirm the diagnosis and is particularly useful when other tests are unclear.
IgM antibodies are the first antibodies formed after the primary exposure to the fungus. IgM immunoglobulin directly activates the complement and assists the phagocytic system in eliminating the antigen from the intravascular space. IgM antibodies are limited to the intravascular space and are considered to be the dominant immunoglobulins in primary infections. Often, during re-infections, levels of IgM antibodies may not be as high as in primary infections.
Possible Interpretations of Pathological Values
- Increase: Candida infection
Laboratory test results are the most important parameter for the diagnosis and monitoring of all pathological conditions. 70%-80% of diagnostic decisions are based on laboratory tests. The correct interpretation of laboratory results allows a doctor to distinguish "healthy" from "diseased".
Laboratory test results should not be interpreted from the numerical result of a single analysis. Test results should be interpreted in relation to each individual case and family history, clinical findings, and the results of other laboratory tests and information. Your personal physician should explain the importance of your test results.
At Diagnostiki Athinon we answer any questions you may have about the test you perform in our laboratory and we contact your doctor to get the best possible medical care.