Mucormycosis – which is also known as the Black fungus is tremendously affecting the Indian population. Over 12000 cases of black fungus have been reported in India – a country that is already facing a severe coronavirus outbreak. According to the reports, the medication to treat these black fungus cases is running very low. As a result, it is continuously affecting the population. The fungal infection is spreading due to the low immunity level of covid-19 patients. Other factors are also responsible for the spread of infection. People with coronavirus have very weak immunity, and they are at a higher risk of developing Mucormycosis.
What is Mucormycosis?
Mucormycosis, which is commonly known as Black fungus causes double vision, respiratory disorder, chest pain, and discoloration of the skin, especially over the nose. This disease has a very close association with diabetes and the immune system of the body.
Mucormycosis is a rare disease that is caused by a group of fungal molds called Mucromycetes. These groups of molds are usually found in soil, manure, and organic matter. The black fungus infection usually affects those people with a weak immune system or having different health problems. It usually affects the lungs of the patients when they inhale the fungal spores from the air. But it is mainly linked with the immune system of the patients. People having a weak immune system are at higher risk of getting black fungus infection.
Health experts have said that overuse of certain drugs suppressing the human immune system could be a major cause of black fungus surge. This disease is not contagious, meaning it cannot spread from the contact between humans. The fungal spores are present in the air and can be easily inhaled by a person. It is almost impossible to avoid the inhalation of fungal spores. That is the reason, it spreads tremendously.
Unsanitary conditions can increase the chances of infection. These infections get more opportunity to get into the body of covid-19 patients when those patients use contaminated oxygen pipes or humidifiers. If a person has weak immunity, then there are more chances of getting the infection.
Symptoms of black fungus
Luckily, there are a few visible symptoms of black fungus that include:
- Facial swelling
- Chest congestion
- Chest pain
- Nose congestion
- Abdominal pain
- Shortness of breath
The fungus affects different parts of the body. The symptoms vary according to the part of the body infected by the fungus. People with black fungus infection face problems of stuffy nose, blurred vision, baggy eyelids, and end with the loss of vision. In most cases, patients do not realize the severity of the infection and arrive late. This results in surgical removal of the eyes to prevent the infection from reaching the brain.
The majority of fungus cases are lethal depending upon the condition of the body. It is said that almost 96% of the black fungus cases are fatal depending upon the severity.
Causes of black fungus outbreak in India
Several factors are contributing to the rise of black fungus cases in India. Due to lack of proper planning, ignoring the SOPs, huge rallies of the election, and wedding season contributed a lot in increasing the black fungus cases. The focus of the government was shifted towards the election. Instead of taking measurements to control the covid-19, the government was organizing rallies and mass meetings for elections. There were no restrictions. That contributed a lot in arising the cases of both covid-19 and black fungus in India.
This contributed to a more lethal strain of coronavirus and its transmission, especially in those people with weak immunity.
There was also a misconception about the vaccine that led to the spread of the virus. The rumors started spreading that vaccine is impacting the people with coronavirus. The misinformation and myths lead people to make the speculations that vaccine is actually causing the disease rather than curing it.
Due to the high illiteracy rate in the country, it was very hard to convince them to get the vaccine without being worried about the side effects. This fallacy refrains people from getting the vaccine and, as a result, contributed to the deadliest second wave of coronavirus.
How the use of steroid drugs also contributed to Black Fungus?
Steroid drugs are usually considered very important for reducing the death rate of covid-19 patients. These steroids are really helpful in reducing the inflammation, but it is also linked with the weakening of immunity level. If not used properly, these steroids can increase the chances of a person getting another infection. It is very important to use these steroid drugs appropriately to fight the disease.
Moreover, people with diabetes are also at higher risk of getting a black fungus infection. These patients may experience an uncontrolled blood sugar level when given steroid drugs. Anyone with a weak immune system, diabetes, or a patient with organ transplantation is at higher risk of getting a fungal infection.