Mucormycosis can damage the sinuses and lungs when the spores are inhaled, reported the Indian Council of Medical Research.

Indian health authorities have warned of a fungal infection seen in some COVID-19 patients that can disfigure facial features and even kill, as the country continues to grapple with the world’s fastest growing coronavirus outbreak.

The mucormycosis , also called infection “black mushrooms” , can damage the sinuses or lungs when spores are inhaled , the Indian Council of Medical Research said in a health advisory issued on Sunday. Patients who have been taking medication for some time or have had prolonged stays in the ICU are particularly susceptible, the ICMR noted. The rare but deadly infection can kill and maim patients , with some COVID patients losing their upper jaws and eyes after contracting it, according to local media reports.

With India reporting more than 300,000 new virus infections over the past 19 days in a row, doctors in emergency rooms are seeing a number of such cases, an unintended consequence of intensive medical intervention that sometimes includes oxygen tubes. through the nose. The fungus can attack through the respiratory tract and was present in India before the COVID pandemic , according to the New York Times . India’s healthcare system has been stretched to breaking point by a second wave of viruses that is proving more deadly and harder to control than the first.

Warning signs of yeast infection include pain and redness around the eyes and nose, shortness of breath, vomiting blood and an altered mental state , the ICMR explained. Doctors were advised to monitor the affected person’s blood glucose levels and to use clean, sterilized water in humidifiers used for oxygen therapy. The ICMR warned against overuse of steroids , indicating that they could make the infection worse.

Fungal infection is the latest complication in India’s fight against the virus, as the country continues with a shortage of hospital beds, oxygen cylinders, medicines and doses of the coronavirus vaccine , as cases increase. Experts warned that the scale of the Indian outbreak is sure to generate new virus mutations and virus sequelae that may not have been seen elsewhere.

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