The Histoplasma capsulatum antigen assay in disseminated histoplasmosis in children.Pediatr Infect Dis J 1994; 13(9):801-5PI
Progressive disseminated histoplasmosis is often fatal without treatment and requires rapid and accurate laboratory diagnosis. Radioimmunoassay for Histoplasma capsulatum var. capsulatum antigen has been established as a sensitive and accurate diagnostic technique for disseminated histoplasmosis in adults; this study examines the radioimmunoassay in children. The clinical and laboratory records of 26 patients 18 years old or younger in whom H. capsulatum antigen was detected in urine by radioimmunoassay and at least one other positive corroborative standard test were evaluated. Twenty-two (85%) had disseminated disease, and 4 (15%) had self-limited pulmonary disease. Positive corroborative tests included serologic tests in 17 of 22 (77%) patients tested, tissue stains in 5 of 9 (56%) and fungal cultures in 16 of 24 (67%). Patients with disseminated histoplasmosis had a greater degree of antigenuria than those with self-limited infection. In 20 patients with progressive disease treated with amphotericin B, antigen levels declined, and the decrease in antigenuria correlated with clinical improvement. The radioimmunoassay for H. capsulatum antigen in urine is an important test in the diagnosis of disseminated histoplasmosis and is useful for assessing the efficacy of treatment. The presence of urinary antigen is strong evidence for progressive disease that requires treatment.