Monday, 20 September 2021

Difficult to place a finger on what's causing mucormycosis

09 June 2021 | Views

The Black Fungus that we are seeing more after the Pandemic is called RHINO ORBITO CEREBRAL MUCORMYCOSIS

Image credit- shutterstock.com

Image credit- shutterstock.com

BLACK FUNGUS is said to be secondary to severe reduction in immunity. The general talk is that the reason for this declared epidemic of Black Fungus could be due to industrial oxygen usage, unsterile humidification while giving oxygen, bad Diabetes Mellitus control, normal and abnormal usage of steroids and last but not the least, self-prescription by patients and unqualified Doctors.

In reality it’s very difficult to place our finger on one cause or the other for definite confirmation.
 
While covid-19 treatment protocols are varying from Doctor to Doctor and hospital to hospital, there is one treatment by an Indian qualified General practitioner Dr. Shankara Chetty practicing in South Africa who considered that Covid-19 viral disease is allergic in nature and advised his community to record the 1st day of symptoms of covid 19 like fever, headaches, cold, dry cough, body aches etc and observe the 8th day by when the disease gets better.

But on the contrary on the 8th day the patient develops breathlessness he/she should be immediately treated with steroids and anti-histamines under the guidance of a qualified Doctor. With this protocol he claims all 4000 of his covid patients he treated, none of them needed hospitalization or oxygen nor required a ventilator.
 
BLACK FUNGUS, medically called as Mucormycosis (also called as Zygomycosis) is nothing new to our country and is a serious condition that needs early detection otherwise it can be deadly. Unlike the Covid-19 the death rate can be more than 50%.

The fungus, Mucoraceae, which causes the Black Fungus is in the soil everywhere and also in decayed vegetables, damp places and decayed fruits etc. and co-exists with us in the Universe. The Black Fungus in reality can be yellow or white but when it affects our body tissues it looks black therefore it’s called black fungus. The black fungus does not harm normal people who were never exposed to covid because of their strong immunity and is not contagious like the covid-19.

The Black Fungus that we are seeing more after the Pandemic is called RHINO ORBITO CEREBRAL MUCORMYCOSIS meaning Rhino is nose, Orbito is eyes, Cerebral is the brain and it effects the above mentioned organs and if it effects the Lungs it is called as Pulmonary Mucormycosis.

After the covid pandemic, we are seeing more of these cases in the hospitalized patients who had oxygen, had diabetes or uncontrolled diabetes and had steroids as treatment. Because the immunity is invariably down in these people the Black Fungus is seen more in them. As nose is the first organ to get affected.

Symptoms are like cold, fever, headaches, nose pain and  bleeding from the nostrils which is black in color,  stuffy nose block etc. And if it gets into the eye, the eye will be swollen and protruded forward and drooping of the eye lid with loss of vision and usually one sided and very rarely both eyes. And from the eye if it gets in to the brain, there will be neurological symptoms.
 
The treatments can be medical which is anti-fungal medicines and surgical where the affected tissues are completely removed and managed medically. Patients who had covid are strongly advised to see an ENT and the EYE specialist immediately when they suspect any of the symptoms.

The surgical treatment is very much like in Diabetes when the Diabetic patient gets Gangrene of the foot, we initially remove the Black skin called debridement and if it doesn’t respond we amputate (remove) the foot or Leg and similarly in Black Fungus structures in the nose are all removed, if palate in the mouth is involved that palate will be removed and same holds true for the eye, the eye will be removed to save it from spreading to the brain.

At Maxivision Eye Hospital we took the initiative and started black fungus early detection clinic and the consultation includes an ENT Doctor, Eye Doctor and a Microbiologist.

The most important preventive steps are-

1. If you had Covid-19 and you get mildest of the symptoms mentioned above you must see the Doctors immediately.

2. Wear a clean and new mask all the time after Covid for the next six months

3. Do not be Afraid as the Black Fungus is not contagious and you do not get it from person to person like the Covid disease

4. If you are a Type 1 or 2 Diabetic your sugar levels should be under control immediately after Covid-19 disease

5. Be very very careful with Steroid usage, only under Doctor’s supervision you are allowed to use steroids.

6. The most important advise given to you and you should give to others is the moment you get a doubt get examined by ENT or EYE Doctors and they will in turn take the help of other Doctors to cure you.

7. PLEASE DONT BE AFRAID AND COME EARLY. 

 

Dr Kasu Prasad Reddy – Chief Surgeon, Founder & Mentor, MaxiVision Eye Hospitals group, Hyderabad

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