The Government Has Asked All States to Declare Black Fungus a Pandemic

The center has asked all states to declare black fungus or mucormycosis an epidemic. A letter from the health ministry said states to list under the epidemic diseases act, rare but possible fatal infection.

That means all confirmed and suspected cases of black fungus, which is seen in covid recovered patients, have to be reported to the health ministry.

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“In recent times a new challenge in the form of a fungal infection namely mucormycosis has emerged and is reported from many states among COVID-19 patients especially those on steroid therapy and deranged sugar control,” Health Ministry Joint Secretary Lav Agarwal has said in a letter to states.

“This fungal infection is leading to prolonged morbidity and mortality among COVID-19 patients,” he says, adding that its treatment needs a multi-disciplinary approach that includes eye surgeons, ENT specialists, general surgeons, neurosurgeons, dental facial surgeons and a special anti-fungal medicine, Amphotericin.

“All government and private health facilities and medical colleges have to follow guidelines for screening, diagnosis, management of mucormycosis,” Mr Agarwal says.

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Patients with compromised immune systems such as diabetic patients are pleaded by doctors to look for the symptoms like nasal blockage or sinus on one side of the face, headache swelling, numbness, or loosening of teeth.

Maharashtra has faced 1,500 cases and 90 deaths from this new infection. Moreover, Rajasthan and Telangana already declared black fungus as an epidemic. Telangana with only 9 cases of black fungus infection so far has mentioned the diseases under its public health act.

Mucormycosis can affect the face, nose, eyes, eye orbit, brain and can even cause a total vision loss. Infection might cause damage to the lungs.

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