Mucormycosis is basically a fungal infection caused by fungi in the order Mucorales. People with a weak immune system are prone to this disease. Generally, this fungus is unable to enter our body as a disease. But COVID-19 along with other risk factors like diabetes and weak immune system, this fungus can lead to deadly disease. This fungus mostly enters the human body through the nasal cavity and affects the nose, eyes and brain of an individual. It grows inside the blood vessels and blocks them, causing blockage of that blood vessels. Thus it becomes a life threatening disease.
Symptoms of Black Fungus
One can look for the following symptoms in our eyes, nose and brain for the early detection of this disease: –
- Swelling on the Eyelids/Face
- Proptosis (bulging out of eyes)
- Difficulty in the movement of eyes
- Double vision
- Blurred vision
- Ptosis (inability to open eyelids)
- Sudden pain around eyes / tooth
- Discoloration of facial skin
- Heaviness in nose or swelling
- Stuffy nose
- Foul smell
- Blackish/bloody discharge from nose
- Black/white colored wound in nose
Who are more prone to this Disease?
Chances are more after infection with corona virus. The below mentioned are more prone to Black Fungus and they need to be extra cautious: –
- Diabetic Patients
Who have uncontrolled level of blood sugar are prone to this disease.
- Long time Oxygen Support
People who were on oxygen support/ BIPAP/ Venltilator for a long time or were in ICUs are at risk.
- Long –Term use of Steroids.
- Immunocompromised People
Like Cancer Patient, AIDS/HIV positive person
- Patient treated with immuno modulators (tocilizumab, itolizumab)
Whom to seek help from?
Depending upon type of symptom any doctor out of the following specialist may be consulted at the initial stage
➡️ ENT Specialist
➡️ Ophthalmologist (Eye Specialist)
When to seek help?
You must immediately consult the medical expert, if you fall in the above mentioned category of risk prone people as soon as you encounter any of the above mentioned symptoms. It is very important to understand that an early diagnosis of this disease will help to save the life of the patient and even surgical procedures can be avoided.
Tests Conducted for Diagnosis
- Deep nasal swab: KOH staining
- Nasal Endoscopy
- Microbiology -Culture, histopathology
- C.T Scan/ MRI
- Blood test: CBC, Blood Sugar, KFT
Treatment of the Disease
Early diagnosis of this disease is the key to save the life of patient. The treatment requires the joint efforts of and ENT specialist, eye specialist, neurologist and sometimes a dental surgeon. Doctors uses the following medications-
Liposomal, Amphotericin-B are given through a vein and work as life saving treatment for patients.
Posaconazole and Isavuconazole are given through mouth to treat the disease.
This disease often affects the eyes, nose, & brain. if the spread of the fungus cannot be stopped with medicines, surgical debridement of that area help to reduce fungal load. sometimes surgery of the infected part has to be done and infected tissue have to be removed.
- Avoid Self Medication
Steroids and any other antibiotic medicines should be taken strictly under the doctor’s supervision.
- Controlled Blood Sugar
If a person is diabetic, he should strictly monitor and control his sugar levels.
- Proper care in COVID Treatment
• aseptic precautions while keeping the COVID patient on oxygen support
• Only sterile water should be used in humidifiers
• Maintain a hygienic surrounding.
Betadine gargle twice a day can help a lot in curing and preventing this disease.
- Ensuring personal hygiene.
As there is no clear indication about the eradication of COVID-19, so everybody has to be extra cautious. Timely consultation from the doctor, intake of a healthy diet, doing light breathing exercises will help to fight the disease. Do not take any problem /symptom lightly.
Eye & ENT specialists are helpful to diagnose early & treat the disease aggressively. If you cannot move out due to illness or lockdown, you may opt for online consultation with a doctor. TAKE CARE.