Over 50,000 vials of Amphotericin-B, used in the treatment of black fungus, have arrived in India from abroad, Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers Mansukh L Mandaviya said on Friday. Amphotericin-B is used to treat Mucormycosis, also known as black fungus, which damages the nose, eyes, sinuses, and sometimes even the brain. “50,000 vials of #AmphotericinB arrives at Mumbai Airport. We are putting in a lot of efforts to meet its requirement in the country. I am thankful to @GileadSciences and @MylanNews for their outstanding support in India’s fight against COVID-19,” Mandaviya said in a tweet.
On Thursday, Union Minister for Chemicals and Fertilisers D V Sadananda Gowda had announced that an additional 80,000 vials of Amphotericin-B have been allocated to all the states/union territories and central institutions. Mucormycosis is a very rare infection which is caused by exposure to mucor mould which is commonly found in soil, plants, manure, and decaying fruits and vegetables. It affects the sinuses, the brain and the lungs and can be life-threatening in diabetic or severely immuno-compromised individuals such as cancer patients or people with HIV/AIDS. Doctors in India are documenting an alarming number of cases of Mucormycosis among patients with COVID-19 and those who have recently recovered. They believe that Mucormycosis may be triggered by the use of steroids, a life-saving treatment for severe and critically ill COVID-19 patients.