Amid rising cases of mucormycosis or "black fungus" infection among COVID patients, Chairman, Medanta, Dr. Naresh Trehan has said that initial symptoms include pain/stuffiness in the nose, inflammation on the cheek, fungus patch inside the mouth, swelling in the eyelid, etc. He said that this requires aggressive medical treatment and can be controlled with specialised treatment.
"The first symptoms of COVID-associated Mucormycosis are pain/stuffiness in the nose, inflammation on cheek, fungus patch inside the mouth, swelling in the eyelid etc. It requires aggressive medical treatment," he said.
According to doctors, cases of mucormycosis are being seen among Covid patients who were administered steroids.
"The key to controlling black fungus is the judicious use of steroids and good control of diabetes," he said.
Several states have reported increased number of back fungus cases among people recovering from the novel coronavirus infection during the second wave of the disease. Experts have said that it could be ascribed to "irrational use of steroids at home without consulting doctors”. The fungal infection, which affects the brain, lungs, and sinuses, can be lethal to those suffering from diabetes and having compromised immune systems.
According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) guidelines, after recovering from coronavirus infection, patients or their caretaker should closely monitor and should not miss any warning signs and symptoms mentioned above, as the fungal infection is found to emerge even weeks or months after recovery.
Mucormycosis begins to manifest as a skin infection in the air pockets located behind the forehead, nose, cheekbones and in between the eyes and teeth. It then spreads to the eyes, lungs and can even spread to the brain. It leads to blackening or discoloration over the nose, blurred or double vision, chest pain, breathing difficulties and coughing of blood.
The treatment requires a multi-disciplinary approach consisting of eye surgeons, ENT specialists, general surgeons, neurosurgeons and dental maxillofacial surgeons, among others, and the institution of the Amphotericin-B injection as an antifungal medicine.