Mortality, morbidity and sequelae of COVID-associated mucormycosis; 18 months follow up study
Keywords:COVID, Mucormycosis, Amphotericin B
Background: The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in India was associated with an increased incidence of rhino-orbital-cerebral mucormycosis. The objective of this paper was to prospectively explore the epidemiology, management, and results of 18 months follow-up of patients presenting with COVID associated mucormycosis at a tertiary referral centre in India.
Methods: Patients presenting with symptoms suggestive of COVID-associated mucormycosis over two months were included in the study. Patients were staged based on the extent of the disease. Surgery was the primary modality of treatment except in those with intracranial spread, altered sensorium, and poor prognosis. A combination of liposomal amphotericin B and posaconazole was used as adjunct medical treatment. Patients were followed up and outcomes at one year of treatment were recorded.
Results: Out of a total of 26 patients who were diagnosed with COVID associated mucormycosis, 21 patients underwent bimodality treatment (medical and surgical). The extent of surgery was based on the stage of the disease. Six eyes received retrobulbar injections of Amphotericin B to salvage vision. The overall mortality was 38.46% and 23.8% in those where the intent of treatment was curative. At the end of one year, 16 of 21 operated patients survived with mild to severe sequelae.
Conclusions: Mucormycosis is a deadly fungal infection with high mortality. Early diagnosis and prompt, aggressive treatment is paramount in preventing mortality. A multidisciplinary approach is useful for effective management. Continuous follow up is paramount to identifying and treating complications.
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