Stave off rare fungal disease Mucormycosis by boosting immunity

Sanitisation workers
Sanitisation workers dispose of medical wastes at medical college in Kalamasery, Kochi. File Photo. Image courtesy: Arun CHANDRABOSE / AFP

The death of one person in Kottayam due to Mucormycosis, a rare fungal illness, has caused concern in Kerala.

The rare disease has been reported from various parts of the country. The disease, which affects people with lower immunity, is being found in people with COVID-19. Mucormycosis is not new but health authorities are closely watching the disease unfold in COVID-affected people.

Mucormycosis affects the human body like fungi on bread. The disease could turn fatal if not detected and treated in a timely manner. Mucormycosis could also affect the brain and respiratory system.

Steroid use

The steroids taken during COVID could be one reason for contracting mucormycosis. The World Health Organisation (WHO) had issued the general guideline that steroid use should be kept minimal. But medical practitioners have been using steroids due to persisting COVID and pneumonia. Those with high diabetes are also in the high-risk category. Mucormycosis usually does not affect people who are healthy.

Mucormycosis usually affects a large portion of the body, impeding the blood flow. So, with a restricted blood flow, the medicines take a longer time to deliver the intended result.

It is essential to start treatment early on. The symptoms of mucormycosis could vary according to the place where it is affected. If it has affected the eyes, the symptom could be a headache. If it affects the respiratory system, there could be a cough and cold. Like in cancer treatment, affected tissues are killed in mucormycosis treatment too.

Boost immunity

Doctors stress the need to stay healthy and have good food to boost immunity. There is no other preventive for this disease.

(Courtesy: Dr. Anup R. Warrier, senior consultant, Infections Diseases, Aster Med City). 

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