The first suspected case of Black Fungus infection Mucormycosis found in a youth died on Wednesday morning at a private hospital in Guwahati. The youth identified as Palmoni Bora (27) was admitted to Apollo Hospital after being detected with COVID-19.
The youth from Dhing was tested positive for COVID-19 on May 6 after he got himself tested at Dhing FRU. The health department referred the patient to Nagaon.
The 27-year-old returned home on May 13 after he tested negative of the infection. His health again deteriorated on May 15 after which he had been admitted to Apollo Hospital in Guwahati. On being treated, he was reportedly tested positive for the rare fungal infection Mucormycosis and succumbed to the disease today at around 6 am.
It may be mentioned that this was the first suspected case of Black Fungus in the state.
Mucormycosis, also known as black fungus, is caused by a group of mould called mucormycetes.
These fungi live in the environment, particularly in soil and in decaying organic matter, such as leaves, compost piles, or rotten wood, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
When someone breathes these fungal spores, they are likely to get the infection that commonly affects the sinuses or lungs.
Medical experts say mucormycosis is an "opportunistic infection" – it latches on to people who are battling illnesses or are on medications that lower the body's ability to fight infections.
According to Union health ministry Mucormycosis is not entirely new. For prevention of black fungus attack, the government has recommended not to give steroids at the onset of Covid-19 but after the sixth day when there will be oxygen requirement.
"When a patient is put on oxygen support, which has a humidifier containing water, the chances of him or her getting the fungal infection increases. It should be ensured that water does not leak from the humidifier," the government has recommended.
Mucorales are ubiquitous throughout the environment and commonly found in decaying organic matter, soil, compost, and animal excreta, particularly in a wet environment.