Candida auris is a fungal infection that has caused widespread concern as its incidence continues to rise. According to data from the CDC, cases have gone from 53 in 2016 to 1,471 in 2021, and over half of US states have reported the presence of this fungus. WHO has identified Candida auris as a critical pathogen that poses a significant threat to public health. However, some people are more vulnerable to contracting this fungus than others.
What is a Candida auris infection?
Candida auris is a type of contagious fungus that thrives in clinical settings, such as hospitals. It can enter the bloodstream, spread throughout the body, and cause serious invasive infections that can be life-threatening. Despite its susceptibility to antifungal treatments, Candida auris can be challenging to treat, particularly in individuals who have underlying health conditions.
Who is most vulnerable to Candida auris?
Some people are more vulnerable to Candida auris than others. Those who have weakened immune systems resulting from conditions such as cancer, diabetes, or the insertion of invasive medical devices, such as feeding tubes or catheters, are at a higher risk of contracting this fungus. Additionally, patients who have been hospitalized for extended periods are also more vulnerable to acquiring Candida auris.
What are the symptoms of Candida auris?
The symptoms of Candida auris infection can be challenging to identify as it affects individuals with other severe conditions. Nevertheless, the manifestations of this infection are dependent on the part of the body that it affects. These can range from bloodstream infections, wound infections, or ear infections. The presence of Candida auris can only be confirmed through laboratory tests, and thus, it is essential to seek medical care immediately if symptoms suggestive of this infection arise.
In conclusion, Candida auris is an urgent threat to public health that will continue to pose significant challenges if not adequately managed. It is, therefore, vital to understand the individuals who are most vulnerable to this fungus to take necessary precautions to mitigate its impact. Anyone who suspects that they may have been infected with Candida auris should seek immediate medical attention to increase their chances of successful treatment.