Scientists have warned against the superfungal disease, which is resistant to drugs and can cause up to 78 percent death in people it infects. While the cases of the fungus called Candida auris are increasing in many countries, especially in the USA, experts are worried that the fungus, which is difficult to detect and treat, may cause a global epidemic. In this article, “What is Candida auris?” “Has Candida auris been seen in Turkey?”, “How deadly is Candida auris?” and “What are the symptoms of Candida auris?” Find answers to your questions and more.
US health officials announced that a drug-resistant “super” fungus was discovered for the first time in the state of Mississippi. As of Monday, seven patients began receiving treatment for the fungus Candida auris (C. auris), according to officials from the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC).
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has warned that C. auris is an “emerging fungus that poses a serious global health threat.” The infection, which is highly contagious and resistant to many antifungal drugs, can cause serious illness in people who already have chronic health problems.
From the UMMC Division of Infectious Diseases, Dr. “This is the first time we have had a locally acquired case in Mississippi. The public needs to be aware that we have seen this fungus. Most cases of C. auris in the US are due to its spread within healthcare facilities in the same city or state,” said Bhagyashri Navalkele. It was stated that the fungus in Mississippi appeared at the care facility.
Health officials stated that when classifying cases, they had to distinguish between infections and “colonization”, which refers to the presence of microorganisms that have not yet caused infection.
Dr. “Colonization means you can be a silent carrier of the fungus and then there can be an active infection. If you are identified as colonized, you should make sure your healthcare team knows this so they can begin isolation measures immediately and initiate appropriate treatment when infection is suspected,” Navalkele said.
On the other hand, Dr. Navalkele stated that C. auris is resistant to most drugs used against fungal infections.
Dr. Navalkele also pointed out that C. auris is difficult to identify with standard laboratory methods and can be misidentified in laboratories that do not have a specific technology.
On the other hand, C. auris cases seem to have increased in the last decade across the USA. Only 63 cases were reported in four states between 2013 and 2016, according to CDC data. According to the figures, 1,440 cases were detected until September 30 in 22 states in 2022.
WHAT IS CANDIDA AURIS?
Candida auris is a mysterious and dangerous fungal infection that is resistant to many known common antifungal drugs. Candida auris is a fungus that can cause life-threatening infections when it enters the bloodstream. It was first described in 2009 in a patient in Japan. In recent years, it has begun to appear largely in hospitals and nursing homes.
WHY IS CANDIDA AURIS DANGEROUS?
C. auris often shows resistance to certain antifungal drugs used to treat such infections. According to statements from the CDC, more than 90 percent of C. auris infections are resistant to an antifungal drug, while 30 percent are resistant to two or more drugs. Once the microbe settles in a place, it is very difficult to completely eradicate it from there. Some hospitals have to provide special cleaning equipment for this process and in some cases even have to remove floor and ceiling tiles.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF CANDIDA AURIS?
People with weakened immune systems, the elderly, the sick, and newborns are at increased risk for C. auris. Common symptoms of C. auris include fever, muscle pain, and malaise. However, because it can be confused with the symptoms of other diseases, it becomes very difficult to detect the presence of superfungus without testing it.
HOW FATAL IS CANDIDA AURIS?
According to the study published in the scientific journal BMC Infectious Diseases in 2019, the mortality rate in populations infected by C. auris ranges from 30 percent to 78 percent.
HAS CANDIDA AURIS BE SEEN IN TURKEY?
According to CSC’s map, the superfungus C. auris has been spotted in many countries, including the USA, Canada, Russia, Australia and Greece. However, the root of the disease has not yet been found in Turkey.