95% of black fungus patients in PGIMER have severe diabetes
Doctors treating cases of black fungus at Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research Chandigarh on Friday have observed that around 95% of the patients being treated here also have severe diabetes.
The tertiary care hospital is witnessing a spike in the number of mucormycosis cases (black fungus) with 116 being reported in May alone, official data shows.
Explaining the reasons, Dr Naresh Panda, head of otolaryngology department said that patients with compromised immunity are at high risk of developing these fungal infections due to a number of reasons and the recent one being excessive use of steroids among the Covid-19 patients.
“We have observed that around 95% of patients having fungal infection also have uncontrolled diabetes and a few have a history of being administered steroids excessively. Covid-19 also impacts the immunity of a person which makes them susceptible for this infection as well,” said Dr Panda.
Seeing the uptick in cases, PGIMER is also running a dedicated OT bed for black fungus cases where at least eight such patients undergo a surgery in a day. The treatment requires removal of the part infected with fungus. The dead tissues need to be removed so that antifungal drugs work better on such patients.
“In around 50% of the patients, the infection reaches a level where it impacts the eyes after nose. If it reaches the brain through the eyes, then the chances of survival are less. Also up to 75% patients come with features of mucormycosis and when they are tested for Covid-19, they are found positive for the virus. Meanwhile, roughly around 15% are Covid cured patients,” doctors said.