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STATES CHRONICLE – More than thirty people in the United States have been affected by a deadly fungal infection which appears to impose resistance to medical treatments. Last June, federal health officials notified United States clinicians to pay attention to the pathogen which has been spreading around the country. The fungus is known to be a strain of Candida auris.
It has been reported in at least twelve countries on five continents starting with 2009. Back then, the virus was first discovered in Japan, in a patient who had an ear infection. Since then, the deadly fungal infection has been encountered in the United Kingdom, Venezuela, South Korea, Pakistan, Kuwait, Kenya, Israel, India, and Colombia.
Unlike other varieties of yeast infections, this one is known to cause severe bloodstream infections, and it manages to spread very fast from person to person, surviving for months on people’s skin and weeks on hospital equipment, chairs and bed rails. Some of the strains of yeast became resistant to all the major types of antifungal treatment.
Statistics indicate that approximately 60% of those who were diagnosed with these infections have died. Nevertheless, several such patients also suffered from other severe illnesses. Patients who are threatened with a high risk are those who were in intensive care for an extended period. Other patients who might by threatened with this sort of infections are those who have a central line catheter inserted into a large vein or those who are on ventilators.
In the US, the biggest number of deadly fungal infections has been reported in New York. Based on the data provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 28 cases were reported. Similar infections were registered in New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maryland, and Illinois. In June 2016, the CDC delivered a warning to all physicians asking them to look for these infections which, apparently, are hard to be determined by standard laboratory methods.
Tom Chiller, the top fungal expert of CDC, stated that when they released that warning, they started receiving reports about more and more cases and, thus, they found out more about how the virus behaves and how it spreads. Now, the CDC is engaged in tracking all the infections, updating the number of patients every few weeks.
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