Granulomatous prostatitis due to Cryptococcus neoformans: diagnostic usefulness of special stains and molecular analysis of 18S rDNA

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A 57-year-old Japanese man complained of pain on micturition. The prostate was of normal size but hard. Transrectal needle biopsy demonstrated granulomatous prostatitis with small focal abscesses. Staining with periodic acid-Schiff, Grocott's methenamine silver and Fontana-Masson revealed yeast-form fungus in the granulomas. The mucoid capsule of the fungus stained with mucicarmine. PCR specific for cryptococcal 18S rDNA using DNA extracted from the pathological specimen was positive, and the sequence was homologous to Cryptococcus neoformans. A diagnosis of cryptococcal granulomatous prostatitis was made. The patient was then found to suffer from meningitis and lung abscess, and was treated with amphotericin B and flucytosine. Careful histological and molecular studies are beneficial to reach the correct diagnosis and to prevent an unfavorable outcome of disseminated cryptococcosis.

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