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Evaluation of a safe sputum processing method for detecting tuberculosis.
  1. A Rattan,
  2. K Kishore,
  3. S Singh,
  4. M Jaber,
  5. I Xess,
  6. R Kumar
  1. Department of Microbiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi.


    AIMS--To evaluate a safe sputum processing method for detection of tuberculosis in developing countries. METHODS--A sample processing method was developed in which acid fast bacilli were killed with 1% sodium hypochlorite and concentrated by flotation on a layer of xylene before staining by the Ziehl Neelsen or auramine O methods. RESULTS--Best results were obtained by auramine O staining after flotation. Staining by the Ziehl Neelsen method after flotation gave better results than direct Ziehl Neelsen staining without flotation. CONCLUSIONS--The flotation method with Ziehl Neelsen staining offers advantages for smear preparation in the tuberculosis control programmes of developing countries.

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