Friday, June 5, 2009

Leather

This child complained about gradual onset sore throat, malaise, and low grade fever. The gram stain is shown below.

Challenge: What is the organism?

First image shown under Fair Use, second image is in the public domain.

4 comments:

tree said...

Corynebacterium diphtheriae

Stephanie said...

diptheria, GPR, coryneform diptheriae.

Anonymous said...

corynebacterium diphtheria?

Craig Chen said...

Nicely done!
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Leather

This is diphtheria caused by the gram positive bacillus Corynebacterium diphtheriae. Diphtheria is from the Greek word for leather, referring to the tough pharyngeal membrane. The pathophysiology is an exotoxin which inactivates elongation factor 2. The pseudomembrane seen here is tightly adherent to underlying tissue, is sharply demarcated, and classically gray in color.

Sources: UpToDate; aapredbook.aappublications.org; Wikipedia.