India faces black fungus epidemic as cases climb

At least 7,250 people have been diagnosed with mucormycosis in India but the actual spread could be much broader, and authorities in several provinces have now sounded the alarm about a rare and life-threatening outbreak that is rapidly emerging worldwide as a Covid-19 problem.

At least 219 deaths have been recorded as a result of mucormycosis, according to figures shared by officials in 13 provinces and Union areas with HT. The union government on Thursday said countries should report the epidemic under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897, making it mandatory for all medical institutions to report infections in a central monitoring network. The Delhi government has separately decided to establish specialized treatment centers at its three hospitals.

Lav Agarwal who is the joint secretary of the department of health said that they have called on countries to classify mucormycosis as a common disease under epidemic diseases and to do so in consultation with the provinces yesterday (Wednesday). Doing so requires all hospitals to report cases so that we can compile data, and ensure that testing, diagnosis and treatment are adhered to in accordance with Union policy and the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).

India faces black fungus epidemic as cases climb
India faces black fungus epidemic as cases climb

The center told the Delhi High Court on Thursday that as of May 19, there had been 7,251 people with mucormycosis in India, 200 of whom were in Delhi.

Mucormycosis is a fungal infection, it has a mortality rate of at least 50%. In general, a rare disease, experts and doctors say that thousands have now become infected through the use of steroids or their immune system, often in an effort to curb the life-threatening immune response to Covid-19.

ICMR Director-General Balram Bhargava said the diseases were the most common fungal infections in the environment. “When the immune system is under stress, it will. If the grains can get high sugar, it will grow. We have seen this happen with Covid-19 patients with diabetes and uncontrolled diabetes, or who are exposed to the body or given antiretroviral drugs, ”he added.

Many provinces are scrambling to place orders for the necessary life-saving drugs, and the Union Minister has announced that production will increase. According to union representitives in the Delhi High Court, they asked the center to submit a report on the steps taken to import the drug, while distributing Amphotericin B, which is the only last drug available. on the basis of open messages. The court heard a series of requests for better administration of Covid-19, and one of the plaintiffs cited a shortage of Amphotericin B.

Center counselors Kirtiman Singh and Amit Mahajan told the court that according to the number of cases, 3,150 containers had been removed from the Capital in three rows between May 11 and May 20. In this case, Delhi state attorney general Rahul Mehra said the weekly demand was 15,000 containers.

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Meanwhile, on Thursday, Mansukh Mandaviya, the country’s Minister of Chemical and Fertilizers, said in a tweet: “Black Fungus (Mucormycosis) curing drug # AmphotericinB deficiency will be resolved soon! Within three days, five Pharma companies obtained new drug licenses for manufacturing in India, in addition to existing pharma companies “.

The shortage is due to unprecedented increases in conditions, which often require one patient to be treated with multiple jars of herbal medicine. Experts at Delhi’s All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) on Wednesday said they would normally see 10-15 cases a year, but have now received more than 100 cases this month.

Dr. Anjan Trikha who is a professor at AIIMS, Delhi said that they can’t talk about diseases like this but in our medical life we   will see five to seven patients like this in the wards. It was unusual.

Delhi Premier Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday said he had instructed three state-run hospitals in Delhi to set up dedicated centers for cases of mucormycosis, while promising to ensure adequate treatment for the disease.

The centers will be at Lok Nayak Hospital, Gugu Teg Bahadur Hospital, and Rajiv Gandhi Super Specialty Hospital.

Delhi chaired a four-member technical committee to “reverse and organize” the distribution of Amphotericin-B. Hospitals are required to make requests for the submission of this committee. Upon approval, the Directorate General of Health Services provides the medication to the institution’s attorney.

Although it has not yet been determined whether the virus that causes Covid-19 is directly responsible for the growing cases, doctors say a number of substances found in Covid-19 patients could lead to secondary infections.

Dr Ambirsh Mithal who is the chairman of the department of endocrinology and diabetes said that the Mucormycosis requires fertile soil to grow, and high levels of glucose in the blood, lack of oxygen, acidosis and the immune system all contribute to growth. For Covid-19 patients, there is a high chance that they will have all of these factors that could lead to an increase in casesare.

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