Histoplasmosis is an infection caused by the Histoplasma fungus, which fungus lives in soil that contains a lot of bird and bat droppings. It can easily become airborne when the soild is disturbed and subsequently infect people.
Infection may not occur immediately, and people who do get infected may get better without any treatment, but this disease can be very severe for people having a weak immune system.
This disease can easily spread itself from the lungs to other organs if your immunity is weak and you will have to undergo proper treatment. The treatment depends on the severity of the infection and can go from a period of 3 months to a year.
Who Can Get Histoplasmosis?
Histoplasmosis is not specific to a certain age group, and anyone who has been in the area with this fungus in the environment can get affected by it.
However, a particular group of people has a higher risk to be affected, and they are:
- People with a weak immunity
- People having HIV/Aids
- People who have had an organ transplant
- Adult aged 55 and older
- People who are taking medications such as TNF-inhibitors or corticosteroids
Histoplasmosis is not contagious and cannot be transferred from person to person, but it can be transferred through an organ transplant very easily.
How To Prevent Histoplasmosis?
Histoplasmosis, as mentioned above, can be found in soil with bird or bat droppings, and when activities are held in these soil, this fungus can spread in the air and enter our body through our nose.
It is very difficult to avoid breathing in environments where this fungi lives and people with weak immune systems should avoid hanging around in such places where people are known to get this fungal disease. According to studies, They should also avoid the following activities:
- Cleaning the chicken coops
- Exploring Caves
- Cleaning or tearing down old buildings
- Remodeling homes
- Digging in soil or chopping wood where there are droppings of bird and bat
These are the measures you should take yourself to prevent being infected. However, the government should hire a professional team or a company that specializes in cleaning and removal of hazardous waste.
Also, consult your doctor before starting a job in a new environment or a place and try to cover your nose with a nose mask to avoid inhaling this bacteria.
The following methods can help public health agencies to eliminate this disease.
In some areas, healthcare teams are required to report any histoplasmosis cases to the authorities, and they are also monitoring the number of the case to help understand why the outbreak of this disease is occurring.
Building Laboratory Capacity
Increasing the laboratories equipment’s so that diagnosis can be made easily and on a greater number of people at a time. This will also allow surveillance in the laboratory.
Developing Better Diagnostic Tools
Since histoplasmosis has symptoms which are similar to other respiratory diseases, the Public health agencies are trying to provide faster and reliable equipment’s to treat histoplasmosis in its early stages and also reduce money and resources on other diagnoses.