In a rare case, a 67-year-old man with diabetes was diagnosed with Mucormycosis and Aspergillosis in Mumbai. Mucormycosis (black fungus) is a rare but serious fungal infection caused by a group of fungi called mucormycetes while Aspergillosis is caused by Aspergillus, a common mold that lives indoors and even outdoors. It is uncommon for these two fungal infections to occur in a person at the same time. They occur primarily in immunocompromised people.
The patient was successfully treated by a team of doctors at Wockhardt Hospitals, Mira Road, including Dr. Chandraveer Singh, Senior Head and Neck Onco and Skull Base Surgeon, and Dr Sheetal Radia, ENT & Head and Neck Onco Surgeon.
Symptoms Of Mucormycosis and Aspergillosis
Before the actual diagnosis, the patient was suffering from intolerable headache, left ear pain, bleeding from the nose, blackish nasal discharge, and loss of vision in the left eye. He had consulted various doctors and visited several hospitals, but the diagnosis of his actual ailment was confirmed only at Wockhardt Hospitals, wherein he got prompt medical attention.
Nasal tissue biopsy was recommended taken to test for Mucormycosis (black fungus) and Aspergillosis which are unlikely to be found in a person at the same time, said Dr. ChandraVeer Singh, Consultant Otorhinolaryngologist and Head & Neck Onco Surgeon, Wockhardt Hospitals.
Dr. Singh added, “Biopsy reports confirmed these two diseases together. This type of case was for the first time seen by us. The infection had invaded the nose, the base of the skull, and the left eye and was so terrible that it could have led to blindness, loss of body tissue, damage to the adjoining vital organs, and even a threat to his life. Hence, he was immediately admitted and scheduled to undergo Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery with Endoscopic Medial Maxillectomy.”
Treatment of Mucormycosis and Aspergillosis
In this case, the patient was recommended Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery with Endoscopic Medial Maxillectomy.
According to Dr. Singh, the surgery was successfully performed without any complications and the whole Mucormycosis and Aspergillosis were removed with debris tissue.
The patient was kept under observation and discharged after 12 days. He has been advised medication at home and follow-ups every week, with diagnostic nasal endoscopy in the next three weeks.”
To prevent this life-threatening infection from occurring again, the patient was advised to keep the blood sugar levels under control, wear a clean and dry mask, maintain good personal hygiene, and clean nose with alkaline nasal douching, added Dr. Singh.
Q. Why diabetic patients are more susceptible to getting Mucormycosis and Aspergillosis?
Diabetic patients are more susceptible to getting Mucormycosis and Aspergillosis due to immunosuppression. In addition, high sugar provides good culture media for mucormycosis.
Q. What precautions should diabetic patients take to avoid getting Mucormycosis and/or Aspergillosis?
To prevent getting such life-threatening fungal infections, diabetic patients should keep their blood sugar levels under control, maintain good personal hygiene, avoiding the triggers of sinusitis (dust and molds), and keep the house clean.
Take note: If you have an upper respiratory infection that lasted for more than two weeks or a severe headache or swelling in your face, then you should head straight to your doctor and seek prompt treatment.