Nine more suspected cases of black fungus admitted at AIIMS, Rishikesh

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Rishikesh, May 18 (PTI) AIIMS, Rishikesh authorities on Tuesday began admitting even suspected cases of black fungus at the hospital to ensure that no time is lost in their treatment.

AIIMS Director Ravikant said nine more suspected mucormycosis or black fungus patients have been admitted at the facility over the past 24 hours.

A decision has been taken to admit even suspected cases as delayed treatment can turn the infection fatal, he said. AIIMS reported its first black fungus death recently when a 36-year-old man from Dehradun succumbed to the infection after being admitted there in an inoperable condition.

Nineteen confirmed black fungus patients are still at the hospital. The AIIMS director advised people, who have a blocked or running nose, black spots on nose, swelling in face or eye, weak or blurred vision, decreased movement of eyeball or it turning black in colour, to consult a doctor without losing time as these could be symptoms of mucormycosis. Mucormycosis is an infection found in serious COVID-19 patients who have recovered but have very weak immunity. It spreads through the nose and affects other parts such as the eyes. Diabetics or COVID patients who have been given a high dose of steroids during treatment are more vulnerable. Altogether, Uttarakhand has reported 23 confirmed black fungus cases so far. Dehradun's Max Hospital had also reported its third post-COVID black fungus infection recently. The sixty-year-old patient had to get his infected eye removed in a surgery.

The relative of a black fungus patient searching for drugs given in its treatment said there is a shortage of such medicines.

However, Pavan Bagiyal, a pharmacist, said alternative medicines given in black fungus infection cases are available. Rest of the medicines will also be available soon. Positive steps have been taken by the state government for local production of these medicines, he said. PTI CORR ALM AAR AAR