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Infectious and tropical diseases 

Infectious and tropical diseases
Chapter:
Infectious and tropical diseases
Author(s):

Drew Provan

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198766537.003.0005
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date: 18 October 2019

This is a brief outline of the current clinical and laboratory investigations of patients suffering from infectious diseases, including those from the tropics. It includes clinical and epidemiological assessment of the patient with fever. The appropriate investigations are discussed and cover the wide range of organisms now found in clinical practice via parasitology, mycology, bacteriology, and virology. Understanding of the laboratory techniques available is important in order to guide their rational use and understand their limitations. The techniques range from traditional methods such as microscopy and culture to newer molecular techniques such as MALDI-TOF and nucleic acid detection polymerase chain reaction. The section on clinical investigation in action outlines the approach to the patient with pyrexia of unknown origin. The increasingly important and complex clinical and laboratory assessment of antimicrobial resistance is also outlined, including how the laboratory fits in with this agenda.

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