ASPERGILLUS INFECTION

Aspergillus infection is an illness caused by Aspergillus, a common indoor and outdoor mold. Infections caused by aspergillosis often affect the respiratory system, although their symptoms and severity vary widely. Most individuals inhale Aspergillus spores daily without becoming unwell.

However, those with compromised immune systems or lung illnesses are more likely to experience health issues owing to Aspergillus. Aspergillus may induce allergic responses, lung infections, and other forms of organ infection.

TYPES

The following are the several types of Aspergillus infection:

  • Aspergilloma
  • Allergic Aspergillus sinusitis
  • Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) 
  • Chronic pulmonary aspergillosis
  • Invasive aspergillosis 

SYMPTOMS

The signs and symptoms of an Aspergillus infection vary depending on the type of infection:

Among the symptoms of an aspergilloma are:

  • Coughing up bloodWheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Fatigue

The following are symptoms of allergic Aspergillus sinusitis:

  • Decreased capacity to smell
  • Stuffiness
  • Headache
  • Runny nose

The signs and symptoms of allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) are similar to those of asthma, which include:

  • Cough
  • Wheezing
  • Fever (in rare cases)
  • Shortness of breath

Chronic pulmonary aspergillosis includes the following symptoms:

  • Fatigue
  • Coughing up blood
  • Shortness of breath
  • Weight loss

Invasive aspergillosis generally affects persons who are already ill from other medical illnesses, making it difficult to determine whether symptoms are caused by an Aspergillus infection. However, the following are the signs of invasive aspergillosis in the lungs:

  • Coughing up blood
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Chills and fever
  • Skin blemishes
  • Headaches 
  • Vision problems
  • Chest pain

Additional symptoms may manifest if the infection travels from the lungs to other parts of the body.

DIAGNOSIS

An Aspergillus infection might be difficult to identify. Under the microscope, Aspergillus is abundant in all habitats but difficult to distinguish from other molds. Aspergillosis symptoms closely resemble those of other respiratory diseases, such as TB.

To determine the source of your symptoms, your doctor will most likely employ one or more of the following tests:

  • Tissue and blood tests
  • Biopsy
  • Imaging test
  • Respiratory secretion (sputum) test

TREATMENT

The treatment for Aspergillus infection varies depending on the kind of sickness. Treatment options include:

  • Observation
  • Antifungal medications
  • Oral corticosteroids
  • Embolization
  • Surgery

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