A systematic literature review on the diagnosis of invasive aspergillosis using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) from bronchoalveolar lavage clinical samples
Date: 16 October 2007
Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) from bronchoalveolar lavage clinical samples (BAL) has been used to assist in the diagnosis of invasive aspergillosis. Several studies have been published regarding the utility of this test, although no systematic review of the literature has been performed to date. The objective of this systematic review was to evaluate the efficacy of PCR from BAL for the diagnosis of invasive aspergillosis in high risk patients. MEDLINE and LILACS databases (1980-2006) searches to identify articles related to PCR in diagnosis of invasive aspergillosis. For inclusion, the study had to report sufficient data to calculate sensitivity, specificity and diagnostic odds ratio of the PCR-based technique. Patients with proven and probably invasive aspergillosis were considered. Forty-five articles met our initial inclusion criteria of which 15 articles were selected. Combining the results from the different reports, the overall sensitivity and specificity values of PCR-based techniques were 79% and 94%, respectively. Contamination, specific primers and method of PCR were important variables that could complicate interpretation of these tests. The present study showed support for the clinical value of PCR from BAL for the diagnosis of invasive aspergillosis in patients with risk factors for this disease.
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