Mucormycosis: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options

Mucormycosis is a rare fungal infection caused by exposure to certain molds. You may know it better by its other name, zygomycosis. It’s an infection that can cause havoc on those infected, with a penchant for those with a weakened immune system. Learn more about managing mucormycosis.

The Cause

Mucormycosis comes from exposure to Mucormycetes molds. This type of mold can be found in piles of compost or rotting wood, and also in soil.

You can catch the infection by breathing in or coming into contact with the mold. This could be through the mold landing on an open cut or burn, and infecting that area. Breathing in the mold can result in us ingesting it, which can be more dangerous. This is because it travels further into us, which can cause infections in our central nervous system or lungs.

What Are the Symptoms?

The symptom depends on the type of infection. If it reaches your brain, facial swelling, congestion, and fever are common. Infection in the lungs can cause cough, shortness of breath, and general chest pain. A cutaneous infection can bring swelling, redness, and ulcers.

One symptom that is common amongst all infections is the blackening of skin. It can present as blackened skin around an open wound, or black lesions in our mouth and throat. The blackness is the result of our tissue dying due to the infection.

Can You Treat It?

Medication is the most common treatment for managing mucormycosis. It’s important to understand that mucormycosis has a high mortality rate.

The most important treatment step is the amputation of any infected tissue. Without amputation, the risk of survival plummets to almost non-existent. Once completely removed, a regimen of antifungal medication is used. The most common and effective antifungal therapy is intravenous injection of amphotericin B.

In Conclusion

While rare, mucormycosis can be a deadly fungal infection. This is why managing mucormycosis correctly is so important.

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