What is Black Fungus? Read its Cause, Symptoms and Treatments!
The second wave of Coronavirus is hitting countries so badly. With time, many new symptoms and after-effects are witnessing. One such severe and rare fungal infection affecting those suffering from Coronavirus is Mucormycosis, commonly known as the Black Fungus. It is frequently rising in some states of India. This fungal disease, if ignored, can lead to loss of eyesight or even death.
Due to its increasing cases, it’s essential to be aware of this disease. Let’s discuss what Black Fungus is, its symptoms, and everything you need to know-
What Is Black Fungus?
Mucormycosis or Black Fungus is a rare but deadly fungal disease caused by a group of fungi known as Mucormycete. Experts say that this fungus is in abundance in the environment and can be often seen on rotting food. It is infecting the patients who have recovered from the noble Coronavirus or are under any medication.
Symptoms To Be Minded:
People suffering from Black Fungus might not be aware of its symptoms. The Initial signs of black fungus include pain and redness around the eyes and nose, fever, coughing, shortness of breath, blood vomits, and altered mental status.
All of the above signs are part of the initial stage.
But according to the experts, infection is suspected when there are these symptoms:
● SINUSITIS: When there is a nasal blockage or congestion or nasal discharge having blood and is blackish.
● FACIAL SYMPTOMS: This includes pain in cheekbones, unilateral facial pain, swelling, or numbness.
● DISCOLORATION: Blackish discoloration over the Nose Bridge or Palate.
● TOOTH MOBILITY: Loosening of teeth and jaw involvement.
● VISION DISRUPTIONS: It means having blurred vision and double vision with pain.
● EFFECTS ON SKIN: Thrombosis, necrosis, skin lesion are also symptoms of Black Fungus.
● RESPIRATORY SYMPTOMS: Pain in the chest, pleural effusion and, adverse effects on the respiratory system.
Who at Higher Risk of Black Fungus?
Vulnerable people are those under some medications, diabetic patients, Chemotherapy patients and those with immunosuppressive drugs. But, people on the radar are COVID patients as it is fatal to them the most and can lead to death due to respiratory failure.
One could catch this scarce disease if they inhaled fungal spores accidentally that can affect sinuses and lungs.
Measures of Prevention:
As we know only measure from all the deadly diseases is prevention. As it is a rare disease but still one should follow precautions and protocols to be safe. As per the protocols given by experts, one should adopt the following measures:
1. Wear a mask while working on any dusty site. It can affect your lungs and sinuses.
2. Use gloves if you are a person who remains in and around the place having soil, moss, or manure. Even a cut will infect your skin with this disease.
3. Wear clothes that cover your entire body to avoid fungal exposure.
4. Ensure good personal hygiene.
How To Diagnose:
Diagnosis and keeping a tap on symptoms are two different things. To diagnose a Mucormycosis or Black fungus, sample of your fluid from your respiratory system will be taken for testing in the lab. You can opt for a tissue biopsy, CT scan of your lungs and sinus to get a diagnosis done.
Do not take this fungal infection lightly. We all have seen what this tiny virus can do. In case you notice any symptoms related to black fungus, immediately seek medical advice.
Treatments Available So Far:
Mucormycosis is treatable, but if left untreated, it can cause adverse effects like blindness and even death. There are a few treatments involved in treating black fungus:
● Antifungal Prescription: If your symptoms and diagnosis are on a mild level, then your doctor might prescribe you some antifungal medicines to treat it. It is always better to complete the dose given by your medical expert as this might treat this rare disease completely on its initial stage.
● Surgery: As it also affects your eyes and facial areas, in cases like blindness and jaw involvement, you might lose your upper or lower jaw or eyesight as well. This stage is amongst the worst-case scenarios and mostly is curable in case of mild symptoms.
● Reducing drug usage: People who are using steroids and immune-modulating drugs are at risk. It is hence suggested to them to reduce the usage of the drugs after medical consultation.
● Controlling Diabetes: Diabetic patients must control their diabetes as it is relevant to prevent themselves from this scarce deadly disease, Black Fungus.
The newest tally rate on this fungal disease says; India has seen some risen cases in the state of Maharashtra, Delhi and, Gujarat. The ICMR health ministry has issued an evidential advisory on 9th May 2021.
TIP: It is better to take preventive measures to avoid getting affected by this disease.