Fungal Diseases

Fungal diseases are called mycoses and those affecting humans can be divided into four groups based on the level of penetration into the body tissues. (view - How Common are Fungal Diseases)

  • Superficial mycoses are caused by fungi that grow on the surface of the skin or hair.
  • Cutaneous mycoses or dermatomycoses include such infections as athlete's foot and ringworm, where growth occurs only in the superficial layers of skin, nails, or hair.
  • Subcutaneous mycoses penetrate below the skin to involve the subcutaneous, connective, and bone tissue.
  • Systemic or deep mycoses are able to infect internal organs and become widely disseminated throughout the body. This type is often fatal.
  • Aspergillus
    Chronic Pulmonary Aspergillosis (CPA)
    Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA)
    Severe Asthma with Fungal Sensitisation (SAFS)
    Aspergillus sinusitis
    Invasive aspergillosis
    Candida Infections
    Fungal nail infections (onychomycosis)
    Vaginal candidiasis (Vaginal thrush)
    Penile candidiasis (Penile thrush)
    Oral candidiasis (Oral thrush)
    Chronic Mucocutaneous Candidiasis (CMC)
    Deep candida infections
    Penicillium marneffei
    Histoplasma capsulatum
    Chronic and acute histoplasmosis
    Disseminated histoplasmosis
    Cryptococcal infection
    Cryptococcal meningitis
    Cryptococcal pneumonia
    Mucormycosis (zygomycosis)
    candida germ tubes
    Candida germ tubes
    Histoplasmosis by Dr Ajello
    Histoplasmosis (from Dr Ajello)

    How Common are Fungal diseases? (link to PDF)

    Treating and caring for patients with fungal diseases is becoming an increasing economic burden. Estimated numbers of patients who will need expensive antifungal drugs for some of the life-threatening fungal illnesses are summarised here.

    Candidaemia infections occur can be predicted at around 300,000 worldwide per year - with a mortality of 30-55%.

    Invasive aspergillosis can occur in different patients groups- so around 10% of new leukaemic cases will go on to develop invasive aspergillosis - so 30,000 per year. Of stem cell transplants - 54,000 are carried out in USA, UK, Europe and Japan anually, of which 5,400 will need treatment for aspergillus infection.

    In chronic obstructive pulmonary disease -1.2% of these will need antifungals for aspergillosis- 216,000 per year. Over 50% of invasive aspergillosis patients will die from their infection - even with treatment.

    In AIDS patients 1million contract cryptococcal meningitis resulting in 600,000 deaths - 70% of which are in sub-saharan Africa.

    Less fatal infections but which affect large numbers of people worldwide include cutaneous fungal infections, nail infections and athletes foot - affects some 1.5 billion people - or 25% of the worlds population.

    Tinea capitis -or hair infection- which is common in young children is predicted to affect some 200 million worldwide.

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