Blastocystis hominis

Introduction
B. hominis is an inhabitant of the human intestinal tract. It is capable of both sexual and asexual reproduction by binary fission and of pseudopod extension and retraction.

Morphology
The classic form that is usually seen in stool specimens varies in size from 6-40μm and is characterized by a large membrane bound central body which occupies 90% of the cell. It has no internal nuclear structure and a rim of peripheral granules the function of which is not known.

Blastocystis hominis

Blastocystis hominis

Blastocystis hominis

Blastocystis hominis

Blastocystis hominis iodine stain

Blastocystis hominis iodine stain

Blastocystis hominis (wet mount)

Blastocystis hominis (wet mount)


Clinical Disease
The pathogenic potential of B. hominis is unclear, though this organism has been associated with nausea, fever, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain.

Laboratory Diagnosis
Permanently stained preparations of fecal smears is the procedure of choice for identification, although the organism can be seen in wet preparations. The recommended stains are Fields’ and Giemsa.

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