Fast-Spreading Fungal Infection 2023

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported, citing federal researchers, that a drug-resistant and possibly lethal fungus is quickly spreading throughout the United States. With the discovery of Candida auris in Japan 15 years ago, the number of cases has soared. In 2022, the disease afflicted 2,377 individuals, compared to 53 in 2016. The rapid spread of the fungus throughout the majority of U.S. states and forty nations has prompted the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to name it a rising hazard.
According to CDC data, the fungus affected 1,471 persons in 2021.

A computer-generated image of the unicellular fungus Candida auris, which is rapidly spreading in the United States.

WSJ said that in its recommendation, the health organization stated that Candida auris has a death rate of up to 60% and poses a concern to the elderly and those with impaired immune systems.

The CDC’s warning on the disease’s spread has been published in Annals of Internal Medicine.

Since November of last year, 12 instances of the fungus have been documented in Mississippi, which is combating a rising outbreak.

“Unfortunately, multidrug-resistant organisms such as C. auris have become increasingly widespread among our highest-risk populations, such as residents of long-term care homes,” said Tammy Yates, a spokesman for the Mississippi State Department of Health.

The CDC reports that the fungus is present on the skin and throughout the body. It poses no hazard to healthy individuals.

In hospitals and nursing homes, Candida auris often spreads through person-to-person contact and contact with infected surfaces and equipment. According to the CDC, the fungus may persist on surfaces for several weeks.

Traditional antifungal medications are ineffective against the fungus, resulting in an increase in infections.

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