An elderly man was admitted to a hospital for abdominal surgery, according to the New York Times.
After testing his blood, it was discovered he was infected with Candida auris, a type of fungus that was only recently discovered but has already been identified in many patients around the world.
Candida auris is most deadly to people with compromised immune systems.
The elderly man was isolated in the ICU but passed away about three months later. What makes the unnamed man frightening is that after his death, doctors discovered that the room is filled with fungus.
“Everything was positive — the walls, the bed, the doors, the curtains, the phones, the sink, the whiteboard, the poles, the pump,” said Dr. Scott Lorin, president of Mount Sinai Hospital’s branch in Brooklyn.
“The mattress, the bed rails, the canister holes, the window shades, the ceiling, everything in the room was positive.”
The hospital needed to use special cleaning equipment and gad to remove floors and ceiling to get rid of the fungus.
Reports of the infection have come from Great Britain, Venezuela, South Africa, Pakistan, India, and Spain, according to the Times.
Cases in New Jersey, New York, and Illinois have also been reported.
The Centers for Disease Control said it “identified 51 clinical case-patients and 61 screening case-patients” in New York alone. 45% of the patients passed away within 90 days.
98% of the patients were resistant to fluconazole, which is used for treating severe fungal infections such as meningitis. The resistance and strength of the infection led the CDC to deem Candida auris a “serious threat” and said it caused 220 deaths and infected 3,400 people per year.
Visit the CDC page to learn more about Candida auris infection.
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