Black Fungus continues to worry recovered Covid-19 patients in Vizag
As the number of Covid-19 recovery cases sees a rise in Vizag city, the number of Black Fungus cases also see a slow, but steady rise simultaneously. From 4-5 cases reported two weeks ago, the number has reached around 45 cases in government hospitals, and a greater number in private hospitals. As the black fungus cases show a rise in already affected covid-19 patients, diabetic patients and people with low immunity, panic has been created among many on how they could be treated. However, according to the doctors who have been observing the patients, early diagnosis of the fungus can help the patient recover faster.
When a patient is infected with the fungus, the patient is advised to get Liposomal Amphotericin B 50 mg vials. Insufficient supply of vials in the transparent market has paved way for its selling in the black market for double the price and has added to the worrisome situation for the patients who are in utmost need.
According to the Head of Microbiology Department, Andhra Medical College Dr. P Appa Rao, the Covid-19 virus itself has an immunosuppression condition. In addition to this, administered steroids for Covid-19 patients make some of the patients vulnerable to Black Fungus. “There are many patients who have come with Black Fungus cases even after they have recovered completely. CT scan is the first diagnosis to know the fungus spread. Soon after the patient is admitted, if it is a severe case, the fungus should be first surgically cleared. This helps the patient to recover early with further medication.”
Doctors and medical staff in the hospitals are advised to monitor blood sugar levels of Covid-19 affected patients, and give steroids only as per the need. The doctors also advised that it is always better to use sterile water as a humidifier for oxygen therapy in the hospitals. “We are seeing cases mostly in covid-19 recovered patients. There are no such precautions to be taken. Those with diabetic conditions need to keep an eye on their blood glucose levels. Any symptoms observed must be immediately diagnosed by a doctor,” said Principal of Andhra Medical College PV Sudhakar.
While individuals at a younger age are not easily prone to the Black Fungus, cases are marginally increasing in the middle age group individuals. The fungus takes only minutes to spread, it slowly spreads from the nose to neck, face, eyes and later to the other parts of the body. Patients who observe swelling in eyes and cheeks with even mild pain should immediately consult the doctor. In Vizag, there are many cases where the patients affected have lost their vision due to black fungus. “We should treat the black fungus patients with Ampho B vials for at least 3-4 weeks depending on the severity. But because of the lack of medicine availability, there are many patients who are getting severe. However, we are giving alternative medicine,” said a doctor at a private hospital in Vizag.