New Delhi, India: Over 45,000 cases of the fatal “black fungus” have been reported in India in the last two months, according to the health ministry, as a nationwide outbreak of Covid-19 sweeps the country.
On Tuesday, the country’s junior health minister, Bharati Pravin Pawar, told parliament that the fungus, which has the scientific term mucormycosis, has killed nearly 4,200 people.
The illness was formerly thought to be extremely rare, but cases have increased dramatically during the pandemic, attacking individuals after they have recovered from Covid-19.
Because it is such an aggressive disease, doctors have been compelled to remove patients’ eyes, noses, and jaws to prevent it from spreading to the brain.
The death rate is more than 50%.
According to government data, the western state of Maharashtra had the largest number of cases, with 9,348.
Before the epidemic, India had only 20 cases per year on average, with only patients with significantly weakened immunity, such as those with high blood sugar levels, HIV, or organ transplant recipients, being at risk.
The recent spike has been connected to the overuse of steroids to treat Covid-19, according to experts.
As cases of the fungus increased, the Indian government declared it an epidemic in May, and social media was swamped with desperate calls for drugs to treat the sickness.
According to government data released on Tuesday, infection rates peaked in May and June and have since dropped significantly.
However, the Hindustan Times daily reported on Monday that the number of cases among children in Rajasthan’s northern state has increased.
What is this black fungus?
Mucormycosis (also known as Black Fungus) is an invasive mold illness caused by micromycetes, a type of mold.
When people come into contact with the fungal spores from the environment (air, water, and soil), they can have mucormycosis.
Patients with diabetes, cancer, or Covid-19 are especially vulnerable to this illness since their immune systems are already compromised.
One of the biggest risk factors for invasive fungal infection is uncontrolled sugar. Mucormycosis, on the other hand, is not communicable like Covid-19.