oa Central African Journal of Medicine - Smallpox in Rhodesia and the use of the electron microscope in the diagnosis of this and other diseases

Volume 18, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 0008-9176



The methods used to examine smallpox specimens in the laboratory are descriptionbed. Only four out of 14 specimens examined in Rhodesia since 1969 have proved to be positive for smallpox. A further four specimens contained herpes-like virus particles, and in six instances no diagnosis could be confirmed. Now that the disease is so rare it is suggested that the diagnosis in every suspected case should be confirmed in the laboratory and instructions are included for the taking and submission of specimens. A few examples are given of the usefulness of the electron microscope in the diagnosis of virus diseases other than smallpox, particularly diseases producing skin lesions in man and animals.

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