Mucormycosis Video And Information
Mucormycosis (previously called zygomycosis) is a serious but rare fungal infection caused by a group of fungi called mucormycetes. At one time these fungi were called Zygomycota, but this scientific name has recently been changed. These fungi live throughout the environment, typically found in the soil and in association with decaying organic matter, such as leaves, compost piles or rotten wood.
|Mucormycosis Periorbital Fungal Infection|
Mucormycosis mainly affects people with weakened immune systems, but it can occur (rarely) in people who are otherwise healthy and can occur in nearly any part of the body. It most commonly affects the sinuses or the lungs after inhaling fungal spores from the air, or the skin after the fungus enters the skin through a cut, scrape, burn, or other type of skin trauma.
Risk factors for developing mucormycosis include:
• Uncontrolled diabetes
• Organ transplant
• Neutropenia (low white blood cells)
• Skin trauma (cuts, scrapes, punctures, or burns)
How does someone get mucormycosis?
There are two main types of infection that people can get, and these depend on the route of exposure. In the pulmonary or sinus form, exposure occurs by inhaling fungal spores from the environment. These spores can cause an infection to develop in the lungs, sinuses, eyes, and face, and in rare cases can spread to the central nervous system. In the cutaneous form, the fungus can enter the skin through cuts, scrapes, puncture wounds, or other forms of trauma to the skin. Mucormycosis is not contagious and does not spread from person to person.
What are the symptoms of mucormycosis?
The symptoms of mucormycosis depend on where in the body the fungus is growing. Mucormycosis most commonly affects the sinuses or lungs. Symptoms of sinus infections include fever, headache, and sinus pain. Lung infections with the fungus can cause fever and cough symptoms.
Skin infections can develop after the fungus enters through a break in the skin due to surgery, burns, or trauma. A skin infection can look like blisters or ulcers, and the infected tissue may turn black. Other symptoms of a skin infection include fever, and tenderness, pain, heat, excessive redness, or swelling around a wound. If the infection is not treated quickly, the fungus can spread throughout the body.
How do I know if I have mucormycosis?
If you have symptoms of the infection, you should see your health care provider. A health care provider can diagnose mucormycosis by taking a sample of infected tissue and sending it to a laboratory. There, the sample will be examined under a microscope.
|Mucormycetes Seen Under Microscope|
How is mucormycosis treated?
Mucormycosis needs to be treated with antifungal medication prescribed by a health care provider. These medications are given by mouth or through a vein. Skin infections with the fungus may require surgery to cut away the infected tissue.