A modification that I developed a number of years ago permits the
Grocott Silver method to be completed in less than 45 minutes. When I
devised this method, I was teaching Histology in Vancouver and the
allotted lab periods were only two hours in length, so a number of
methods had to be "tweaked" to allow them to be completed by even the
slowest students within that time period.
This method has actually been adopted by several clinical labs as it is
so much quicker, but without sacrificing the specificity.
1. Bring sections to water as usual.
2. Oxidize in 10% chromic acid for 10 minutes (this step is the
biggest time saver)
(While this is happening, make up the Grocott silver working
solution in a very clean glass Coplin jar))
3. Wash thoroughly in running water
4. Treat with 1% sodium metabisulphite for 1 minute
(While this is happening, place the Coplin jar in a 56 degree
5. Wash well in several changes of distilled water
6. Place the section(s) in the warm silver solution. Use plastic
forceps as metal ones will cause the silver to precipitate.
7. Watch the sections carefully, after a couple of minutes they will
begin to turn golden-brown.
8. Place the sections in a Coplin jar of distilled water. Examine the
control section microscopically to gauge the intensity of the silver
impregnation. Ideally, fungi (or protozoa, Pneumocystis, etc) will
appear black on a golden background.
If the fungi appear too pale, rinse the sections again in distilled
water and place them back in the silver solution for a few more seconds.
Re-examine the sections, etc.
9. When the fungi appear correctly impregnated, wash thoroughly in
10. Treat with gold chloride (whatever concentration you have on hand)
12. Treat with 1% sodium thiosulphate
14. Dehydrate, Clear and mount
Do not be tempted to pre-heat the silver solution to soon. If you do
this, or if the Coplin jar is not scrupulously clean, the silver
solution will precipitate to form a silver mirror on the glass.
Patricia Karlisch wrote:
> Does anyone have a quick method to do the Grocott stain.
> Thank you,
> Pat Karlisch firstname.lastname@example.org
> Pat Karlisch
> Supervisor, Histology, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
> Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
> Mail Code H179
> Hershey, PA 17033
> Phone (717) 531-6072
> Fax: (717) 531- 7741
> email: email@example.com
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