A 38-year-old man who is immunocompromised because of HIV presents with 1 month of worsening right headache, ear pain, and fever. He is determined to have malignant external otitis and osteomyelitis of the base of the skull. The etiology is fungal. Fungal malignant external otitis and osteomyelitis of the base of the skull in HIV patients is most commonly caused by which of the following?
b. Cryptococcus neoformans
the answer is below…
The United States Medical Licensing Examination, or USMLE for short, is a three-part licensing examination that is required in order to receive a license to practice medicine within the United States.
The USMLE assesses a physician’s ability to apply knowledge, concepts, and principles, and to determine fundamental patient-centered skills that are important in health and disease and that constitute the basis of safe and effective patient care.Examination committees composed of medical educators and clinicians from across the United States and its territories prepare the examination materials each year.
This exam is designed by the Federation of State Medical Boards and the National Board of Medical Examiners to determine whether or not an individual understands and can apply the knowledge necessary to practice medicine safely and intelligently.
The USMLE is actually comprised of three different exams that are referred to as steps, which examine the individual’s knowledge of specific topics related to the field of medicine such as basic science, medical knowledge, medical skills, clinical science, and the application of all of these skills and areas of knowledge in the medical field.
All three steps of the USMLE include a series of computerized multiple-choice questions, but the format of the exam and the information covered in each multiple-choice section is different for each step of the USMLE. The USMLE Step II also has a clinical skills portion that examines an individual’s ability to work with real patients and the USMLE Step III has a computerized patient simulation portion in addition to the multiple-choice section of the exam. In order for an individual to receive a license to practice medicine, the individual must pass all three steps of the USMLE.
The correct answer is d; Aspergillus.
Patients with brain abscesses may exhibit focal signs, seizures, delirium, or less specific neurologic findings. These patients often have fever, but the CSF may not reflect the infectious basis of the fever until the abscess ruptures into the ventricles or subarachnoid space. Although Aspergillus is the most common cause of fungal abscesses, it is a relatively uncommon cause of fungal meningitis or meningoencephalitis. Nocardia is not classified as a fungus despite its resemblance to a fungus.