17:53 GMT23 January 2021
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    A recent review published by the Swizterland-based "Journal of Fungi" claimed the prevalence of mucormycosis or black fungal infection in India is about 80 times higher than in developed countries, being approximately 0.14 cases per 1,000 individuals. Only 851 cases have been reported since 2000.

    After creating ripples among local authorities in Delhi, Rajasthan, Mumbai, and Gujarat, mucormycosis — a rare infection that harms people's lungs, jaws, nose, and eyesight — is being reported from the southern states of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka as well.

    Local authorities in Pune said that hospitals have registered over 30 cases in the city over the last few days.

    "We are treating several patients right now. In a few patients, the fungal infection had reached the sinus in the forehead, decaying the jaw", Dr Puhskar Gadre, Senior Consultant at Sadashiv Peth, Pune said.

    In Mumbai, at least six people have lost their lives, with more than two dozen hospitalised due to the deadly fungal infection. In the western city of Ahmedabad, at least nine people have already perished, with around 50 hospitalised because of the infection. Doctors claimed that most of these cases are being reported in COVID-19 patients as high steroid levels decreased immunity among them.

    Relatives wearing protective gear tie up the dead body  before the burial at a graveyard in New Delhi (File)
    © REUTERS / SAJJAD HUSSAIN
    Relatives wearing protective gear tie up the dead body before the burial at a graveyard in New Delhi (File)

    A senior consultant at the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital told Sputnik that more than a hundred patients are receiving treatment in different hospitals around Delhi.

    "No local cases have been reported in the state so far, but we are getting a few cases from Tamil Nadu. Most of those patients are being referred to the Medical College Hospital in Thiruvananthapuram", said an official with the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP) in Kerala as quoted by The New Indian Express.

    Doctors and health experts have issued warnings to people who are recovering from COVID-19 as this black fungal infection appears in patients after 10-15 days. Physicians claim they are witnessing a more than 50 percent jump in cases compared to the mucormycosis outbreaks seen over the past few years.

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    Sputnik, diabetes, COVID-19, fungal infection, Gujarat, India
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