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What is 'black fungus' and what are the symptoms of this disease in patients with COVID-19?

» ProSalud

It starts in the respiratory tract and spreads throughout the body. In the Asian country it is already considered a nightmare within the coronavirus pandemic.

In India, the patients with COVID-19 recovered are developing a rare deadly infection they call “black fungus”. It starts in the respiratory tract and spreads throughout the body. In the Asian country it is already considered a nightmare within the coronavirus pandemic.

» ProSalud

Thousands of cases have been recorded among patients who had recovered from COVID-19 or that they were in the process of recovery, hence it is associated with the pandemic. However, The disease reported in India is mucormycosis (also called zycomycosis), caused by a group of fungi called mucormycetes.

"The Indian doctors report that the number of mucormycosis cases has increased considerably and that larger hospitals diagnose it in patients every two days,” said Oliver Cornely, a research professor at the European Center of Excellence for Invasive Fungal Infections in Cologne, Germany.

“The fungus starts in the nasal passages and spreads through the mucous membrane to the bones,” Cornely explained. “It can also pass through the bones to the eyes, eye socket, muscles and nerves.”

When that happens, surgeons often have to remove an entire eye to save a patient's life. It is a radical operation, but it is considered the only way for doctors to remove infected tissue. “The fungus can also infect the brain,” Cornely said.

What are the symptoms?

La mucormycosis It is a rare infection. People get it when they come into contact with mucormycetes, a type of mold. Initial symptoms are usually quite common: red eyes or red nose. Later, patients may have bloody or black nasal discharge, perhaps also fever, and may experience difficulty breathing.

They also have nasal discharge (blackish/bloody), local pain in the cheekbone. One-sided facial pain, numbness, or swelling, as well as blackish discoloration over the bridge of the nose and/or the roof of the mouth.

Toothache, loosening of teeth, jaw involvement may occur; blurred or double vision with pain, skin lesion; thrombosis and necrosis, as well as chest pain, difficulty breathing and vomiting blood.

However, specialists say, no need to panic and the risk of a healthy person or even someone with a mild coronavirus infection contracting mucormycosis is rare. Although It is important to treat mucormycosis as soon as possible

“There is no doubt that doctors in India are experienced enough to detect mucormycosis, but even they would not normally see these types of infections so frequently,” Cornely said. But that is precisely the situation they face now, she added.

According to a BBC investigation, mucormycosis is not contagious between people or animals. It only develops in patients with favorable conditions in their body, such as diabetes or immunosuppression caused by other diseases.

Last week, Hugo López-Gatell, Undersecretary of Prevention and Health Promotion, assured that mucormycosis is not new and that You should not think that it will spread like the coronavirus. “There have been a significant number of cases of mucormycosis in India. “This may be due to the use of very high doses of steroid medications,” he explained.

Text and source: in-patients-with-covid-19/

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Yair Ramirez
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