14:46 GMT16 June 2021
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    Black Fungus or Mucormycosis (earlier known as zygomycosis) is a severe but rare fungal infection; it mainly affects people who have health issues or take medicines that lower the body's ability to fight germs and sickness.

    As India is battling an unprecedented surge of COVID-19 cases in its horrific second wave, doctors across the country have confirmed multiple cases of the deadly "Black Fungus" infection, which is called "mucormycosis".

    Cases of Black Fungus are occurring as a side effect in patients recovering from coronavirus. Delhi's Sir Ganga Ram Hospital has confirmed that it has found six cases of mucormycosis in the last two days.

    According to the doctor, one of the reasons behind the rise in black fungus could be the overuse of steroids.

    "Use of steroids in the treatment of Covid infection, plus the fact that many Covid patients have diabetes as co-morbidity, could be the reasons for a rise in the number of black fungus infections again. Covid patients with weak immunity are more prone to this deadly infection," Dr. Ajay Swaroop, Chairman of the ENT department at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital told reporters on Thursday.

    "The use of steroids for diabetic patients during Covid-19 treatment probably leads to the growth of the fungus. Even in blood pressure, mucormycosis cases have been seen," Swaroop said.

    "According to the reports across India, nearly 85% percent of the mucormycosis patient with Covid-19 cases has a history of high blood sugar and heavy steroids use," infectious disease specialist Dr. Atul Patel told the Indian daily Navbharat Times.

    The rise in infections has been witnessed not only in Delhi. Several Indian states, such as Gujarat and Maharashtra, are witnessing an uptick in the number of post-Covid fungal infections.

    According to the Navbharat Times, in the past one month, almost 150 surgeries due to mucormycosis were conducted in Gujarat.

    India set an alarming new record in its daily COVID numbers on Friday, recording over 414,000 new cases and 3,915 deaths in the last 24 hours.


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