Black Fungus Treatment & Diagnosis

introduction

Black Fungus Treatment 

Black fungus diagnosis is challenging because the symptoms are common to several other conditions. It’s diagnosis hence involves a detailed patient history, a thorough clinical evaluation, and a variety of specialised tests. A diagnosis is made by identifying the mold in the affected tissue by fungal culture. It is important to diagnose this condition as early as possible for a better prognosis.

Clinical testing and workup 

Mucormycosis diagnosis tests include

 

Endoscopic examination of the nose

This is a procedure where a thin flexible tube with a tiny camera and light, called an endoscope is inserted into the nose. This allows the doctor to look at the nose and sinus passages. 

 

A biopsy of a swab taken from the nose 

A swab is inserted into the nostril of the patient and rotated in place to obtain a sample of the tissue. This is then sent for examination under a microscope by a trained microbiologist. This examination can show the presence of the mold. 

 

CT / MRI scan 

A CT or MRI scan may also be used to indicate certain changes that can indicate mucormycosis infection. This along with the clinical findings can help clinch the diagnosis. 

Time is of utmost importance in the treatment of Mucormycosis and the investigative processes take no more than one day to produce reports.

 

Black Fungus Treatment

Treatment for black fungus is teamwork involving an ENT (Ear, nose, throat ) specialist, ophthalmologist, neurologist and radiologist. If black fungal disease is suspected, the patient should receive medical attention at the earliest. Mucormycosis treatment at home should not be attempted without medical advice. Black fungus treatment post diagnosis should happen at a medical center with advanced facilities. 

For treatment of black fungus, the ENT surgeon has to aggressively debride the necrotic or dead tissue from the nose and the sinus. In case, the eye is involved, then the fungal material from around the eye also has to be removed. 

In advanced cases, where the entire orbit or the space around the eye is also involved, the eye has to be removed in a process called orbital exenteration. 

 Be it the eye or upper jaw, these can be replaced with appropriate artificial substitutes or prostheses. While prosthetic replacement of the missing facial structures can commence once the patient stabilizes after surgery, it is important to reassure patients about the availability of such interventions instead of leaving them to panic with the sudden unforeseen loss, augmenting a post-Covid stress disorder which is already a reality.

Along with the surgery, black fungus treatment will also include the administration of antifungal medication. The most commonly used medication is  Amphotericin B. Initially, this medicine is infused intravenously and if the patient shows improvement, they can be shifted to oral antifungal medication. 

Doctors will also treat the underlying risk factors that are associated with mucormycosis infection.  

Black fungus treatment in advanced cases can lead to loss of the upper jaw and sometimes even the eye. Patients would need to come to terms with the loss of function due to a missing jaw — difficulty with chewing, swallowing, facial aesthetics, and loss of self-esteem.

 Be it the eye or upper jaw, these can be replaced with appropriate artificial substitutes or prostheses. While prosthetic replacement of the missing facial structures can commence once the patient stabilizes after surgery, it is important to reassure patients about the availability of such interventions instead of leaving them to panic with the sudden unforeseen loss, augmenting a post-Covid stress disorder which is already a reality.

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