VIJAYAPURA: At least 35 per cent of all the people who were infected with Mucormycosis (black fungus) in the district have developed eyesight problems.According to the district administration, 164 cases of black fungus have been recorded in the district. “Of these, only 75 cases are active and two people have succumbed to the infection. As many as 57 people with the infection developed vision issues, where 15 of them have lost one eye, one person has lost both the eyes and the remaining are being treated at district and private hospitals. A whopping 130 surgeries for the infected patients have been performed in the district,” an official said.
Speaking to The New Indian Express, Dr Sharanappa Katti, district surgeon, pointed out that that if the patient infected with black fungus turns up late to the hospital there is a high chance of his/her vision getting affected. “If the fungus is still in the nose, it can be treated with Amphotericin B and the eyes can be saved. But once it spreads to the eyes, surgery has to be performed to remove the dead tissue to prevent further infection and save the patient’s life,” he said.
There is a 65 per cent chance of losing eyesight among the infected patients and over 75 per cent of people have to undergo surgery to save their lives. At present, all surgeries related to the fungal infection are being carried out at BLDE hospital. However, the fatality rate is very low, added Dr Katti.
Of the total cases reported in the district, surgeries have been performed on 130 people. In 23 patients, the brain has been affected and they are under treatment. The maximum surgeries for black fungus have been performed in BLDE Hospital.
After such cases were found to be increasing in the district, the district administration, on the suggestion of the experts, launched a surveillance on Covid-recovered patients with comorbidities to identify the fungal infection in the early stages. According to sources, “The district administration has identified over 550 people who have recovered from Covid and have diabetes. However, most of them have not developed the symptoms of Mucormycosis. The health authorities are keeping a tab on them.”