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India reported over 45,000 Black Fungus cases, Health Minister says

India reported over 45,000 Black Fungus cases, Health Minister says

New Delhi, Jul 21 (Prensa Latina) A total of 45,432 cases of mucormycosis (black fungus) have been reported by states and Uts till July 15 of which 21,085 affected people are receiving treatment and 4,252 have passed away, the Health and Family Welfare Minister Mansukh Mandaviya said in a written reply.

A large majority of mucormycosis patients (84.4%) had reported a history of Covid-19, Mandaviya said.

In the wake of second wave of the Covid-19, an increased number of mucormycosis cases were reported and the ministry of health after thorough gap analysis and consultations took a number of steps to address the problem.

Mucormycosis and other fungal infections are most commonly seen as an opportunistic infection. They are found in those with underlying immunity either due to a diabetes, cancers particularly hematological malignances, etc. or as a side effect of prolonged/irrational use of certain drugs like steroids, immunosuppressive drugs for management of other disorders including Covid-19, the minister explained.

Taking cognizance of association between elevated blood sugar levels (whether in patients with pre-existing diabetes mellitus or hyperglycemia due to steroid therapy), an updated Clinical Guidance on Diagnosis and Management of Diabetes at Covid-19 Patient Management facility was issued by the ministry on June 11.

Mucormycosis, which affects patients recovered from this disease is acquired by contact with spores of the fungus present in the environment, or by the skin through cuts or open wounds.

It can have serious consequences for those with AIDS, cancer, diabetes.

The most common symptoms are poor appetite, weight loss, tiredness, and necrosis or death of cells and tissue.

In addition to itchy eyes and nose, fever, bloody vomiting, cough, and shortness of breath, signs include one-sided facial swelling, headache, nasal congestion, and black lesions on the nasal bridge and upper inner part of the mouth.

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