Susceptibility of severe COVID-19 patients to rhino-orbital mucormycosis fungal infection in different clinical manifestations

Link to article at PubMed

Jpn J Ophthalmol. 2021 May 31. doi: 10.1007/s10384-021-00845-5. Online ahead of print.


PURPOSE: To present the different clinical manifestations of rhino-orbital mucormycosis (ROM) co-infection in severe COVID-19 patients.

STUDY DESIGN: Prospective observational clinical study METHODS: Among 32,814 patients hospitalized with the diagnosis of COVID-19 between March 2020 and December 2020 in our center, eleven microbiologically confirmed ROM co-infection cases in severe COVID-19 patients were evaluated.

RESULTS: There were nine men and two women with a mean age of 73.1 ± 7.7 years. Eight patients had uncontrolled type 2 diabetes with a mean diagnosis duration of 12.1 ± 4.4 years. All patients had COVID-19-associated acute respiratory distress syndrome and received corticosteroids. The mean time interval between COVID-19 diagnosis and ROM diagnosis was 14.4 ± 4.3 days. Seven patients (63.6%) had orbital apex syndrome, and four patients (36.4%) presented with orbital cellulitis. Endophthalmitis was detected in 54.5% of patients, and two of these patients developed retinoschisis. CT scan/MRI revealed sino-orbital involvement in all patients, and three of these had cerebral involvement at initial presentation. All patients received intravenous and retrobulbar liposomal amphotericin B and had undergone radical debridement of involved sinuses. Intravitreal liposomal amphotericin B injected in patients with endophthalmitis. Despite all measures, 63.6% of patients expired.

CONCLUSIONS: Severe COVID-19 is associated with a significant incidence of ROM with higher mortality rates due to immune dysregulation and the widespread use of steroids. Physicians should be aware of the possibility of this infection in patients with COVID-19. An aggressive multidisciplinary approach can help to reduce mortality.

PMID:34057620 | DOI:10.1007/s10384-021-00845-5

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