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What is Green fungus & how is it affecting COVID-19 patients?

Introduction

Green fungus, often known as Aspergillosis, is a fungal infection caused by the common mold Aspergillus. Aspergillosis can be infected through close contact or by inhaling Aspergillus spores from the environment. Aspergillus can be found both indoors and outdoors and most of us breathe in Aspergillus spores on a daily basis without falling sick. Those with compromised immune systems or lung disease, on the other hand, are more likely to be infected. The first incidence of green fungus was discovered when a Covid patient in India underwent a test after being suspected of having mucormycosis or black fungus.

Green fungus and COVID-19

Invasive pulmonary aspergillosis (IPA) is a well-known complication in immunocompromised individuals, and it is particularly common in recipients of haematopoietic stem cells or solid organ transplants. Further advancements have indicated that half of all incidences of IPA occur in the ICU, in patients who are frequently non-neutropenic. Non-immunocompromised covid patients with severe acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) using corticosteroids were impacted as well. However, the clinical features and risk factors of IPA in COVID-19 patients are not well established.

Over years, Aspergillosis has been increasingly recorded in persons who do not have compromised immune systems and instead have severe viral respiratory infections such as influenza. COVID-19-associated pulmonary aspergillosis (CAPA) has been described in several recent studies. According to the information, CAPA:

  • Frequently found in patients with severe COVID-19, ventilator-dependent in ICUs.
  • Can be quite challenging to diagnose because patients often have non-specific symptoms and testing typically necessitates samples from deep in the lungs.
  • May leads to severe complications and death.

Hence, clinicians should eliminate aspergillosis in patients with critical COVID-19 virus who have deteriorating respiratory function or sepsis, even if there is no sign and symptoms of classic aspergillosis

COVID-19 vaccine

There is no evidence of the relation between covid 19 vaccination and fungal infections. COVID-19 related fungal infections are also commonly found in those with severe symptoms and/or immunocompromised persons.

Besides that, Malaysia also obtained 66.7 million doses of covid 19 vaccine (jenis vaksin covid 19) from five vaccine manufacturers through the COVAX Facility. Currently, they are allowed to supply Pfizer, Sinovac, Astra-Zeneca, Janssen, and CanSinoBio.

Multiple studies showed these vaccines are capable of providing sufficient safety and efficacy against covid 19. Malaysia planned to achieve herd immunity as soon as possible, provided with at least 70 to 80 percent of vaccination coverage in Malaysia through the National COVID-19 Immunisation Programme by MOH.

Conclusion

Although there are myths that remain unclear between the green fungus and covid-19, we understand that Aspergillus infections are uncommon in normal individuals. There are measures we can take to reduce the risk of covid 19 infections and such a hideous scene.

Obey the covid 19 SOP and ensure personal hygiene. When you have scheduled a session for covid 19 vaccination, please do not hesitate to meet your doctor and get your vaccine. We do have well trained healthcare workers, nurses and doctors to assist you through the vaccination process. Rumours and false knowledge about the vaccination has been rolled out by misleading people, spreading fears among people. It is recommended to clear all your queries and have full information with health professionals before any action or decision is made.

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