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Ann Hematol. 2003 Oct;82 Suppl 2:S141-8. Epub 2003 Sep 11.

Diagnosis of invasive fungal infections in hematology and oncology--guidelines of the Infectious Diseases Working Party (AGIHO) of the German Society of Hematology and Oncology (DGHO).

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Dept. of Medicine, Div. Onkology/Hematology, Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Campus Charité Mitte, Schumannstrasse 20-21, 10117, Berlin, Germany.


Invasive fungal infections are a primary cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with hematological malignancies. Establishing a definite diagnosis of invasive fungal infection in febrile neutropenic patients is particularly challenging and time-consuming, but a delay of antifungal treatment leads to higher mortality. This situation has lead to the strategy of initiation "empirical" antifungal therapy prior to the detection of fungi. Meanwhile, improvements in diagnostic procedures are achieved, especially with imaging techniques and non-culture based methods which include antigen-based assays, metabolite detection and molecular detection of fungal DNA from body fluid samples using conserved or specific genome sequences. The AGIHO presents recommendations for the diagnosis of invasive fungal infections with risk-adapted screening concepts for the neutropenic and febrile episodes of patients with hemato-oncological disorders.

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