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Black Fungus cases reported in Jaipur add to the city's pandemic woes!

The genesis and repercussions of this infection have caused concern among citizens.

Adding on to the woes of the pandemic, there have been reports of Black Fungus infection in a handful of COVID survivors in Jaipur and the count seems to be snowballing each day, across various regions. Reportedly, 14 patients have been detected with the infection in the last 12 hours and according to the head of the ENT department at SMS hospital, from August to December last year, around 24 such cases were noted. Although most of these patients were treated by doctors in time, a few have ended up losing their eyesight due to this infection. The genesis and repercussions of the Black Fungus have caused concern among citizens.

What is Mucormycosis aka Black Fungus?

As per the CDC, Mucormycosis (sometimes called zygomycosis) is a serious but rare fungal infection caused by a group of molds called mucormycetes. These fungi live throughout the environment, particularly in soil and in decaying organic matter, such as leaves, compost piles, or rotten wood.

People get mucormycosis by coming in contact with the fungal spores in the environment. For example, the lung or sinus forms of the infection can occur after someone breathes in spores. These forms of mucormycosis usually occur in people who have health problems or take medicines that lower the body's ability to fight germs and sickness. Mucormycosis can also develop on the skin after the fungus enters the skin through a cut, scrape, burn or other types of skin trauma.

Although the direct relation between COVID-19 and Mucormycosis is still not established, it may stem from long-term corticosteroid use, immunity issues, inadequate monitoring of blood sugar levels, pre-existing comorbidities, amid other causes. According to a statement of an official, previously the mortality rate ranged between 30%-50% but it has now taken a downward turn and is marked at 10%, as yet. The official added that more people are losing their vision, during this ongoing second wave more.

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