What is Mucormycosis or Black Fungus? What are it’s symptoms, causes and treatment? Why there is sudden rise in cases of it? And who is at most risk?
From the past few days, many cases of black fungus are found in India. Black Fungus or Mucormycosis is a very rare and a dangerous fungal infection that could even lead to death. This disease was made notifiable to public by government of India on thursday after asking states to report detail of confirmed and suspected cases to Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme.
Black Fungus cases have been confirmed in 18 states including Karnataka, Maharashtra, Uttarakhand, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Haryana, Delhi, Andhra Pradesh. Most of these have confirmed it as a notifiable disease. Some states have also declared it as an epidemic like Gujarat, Odisha, Tamil Nadu and union territory of Chandigarh.
Mucormycosis is a very rare and deadly infection caused by exposure to mucor mould. It is present everywhere including the surroundings like soil, plants, decaying fruits and vegetables and even in nose and mucous of healthy people as per Dr. Nair.
It affects brain, lungs, sinus, eyes and other parts and could be extremely dangerous, especially in the case of diabetic individuals or those with very low immunity such as patients of cancer or AIDS.
Basically the floating fungal spore is the cause of it. It can enter your body through any cut in your skin and cause infection. But it is more dangerous if it travel through nose or sinus.
The reported cases of this infection are usually those who were under treatment or were recovered recently. The overusage of steroids is triggering this fungal infection.
Those who are under treatment of Covid 19 are given steroids so that inflammation in their lungs could be reduced. But these steroids also result in reducing immunity and pushing up the sugar levels of infected whether he/she is diabetic or not. It is believed that reduction in immunity and a high increase in sugar level is the primary cause of it.
The disease is having a dangerous mortality rate of about 50%.And if not treated earlier, the doctors have to remove affected part by surgery to save the patient.
Black Fungus symptoms:
- Sinus Pain
- Nasal Blockage
- One sided headache
- Swelling or Numbness
- Loosening of teeth
- Chest Pain
- Blurry vision
- Blackness in skin
Who are at most risk?
- Recently recovered people from corona
- Diabetic people
- People with low immunity
- People who intake lots of steroids
- People suffering from Cancer or Aids
Prevention for Black Fungus
- Use masks
- Wear long sleeved clothes
- Wear shoes
- Maintain personal hygiene
- Control Diabetes
- Maintain Blood Sugar Levels
- Reduce steroids
- Keep hydrating yourself
- Discontinue immunomodulating drugs
There is no specific treatment of black fungus till now. The only option to cure it is by surgery which makes this disease more dangerous. As the infected people have to get their eyes, jaw or any part of body that is infected to cure it.Overall currently in this tough time, one need to stay at home, stay fit, have a healthy diet and exercise. Try to keep your immune system strong and keep patience in current situation.