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CDC warns of urgent threat of invasive fungal infection spreading in healthcare facilities

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns that the fungus Candida Auris poses an urgent threat after spreading rapidly at healthcare facilities across twenty-seven states.


The CDC labels Candida Auris as an emerging multidrug-resistant yeast, a type of fungus that can cause severe infections and death. The fungus is easily transmittable in hospitals among patients, especially the elderly. Some strains of Candida Auris are resistant to all three available anti-fungal treatments.


Four different strains of the fungus emerged, yet the CDC does not know why. They do believe that the fungus was carried over by international travel. 


The first reported case of Candida Auris was at a Japanese hospital in 2009 in an external ear canal of a 70-year-old woman. Analysis of its DNA concluded that the fungus was a new species of Candida with a close relationship to Candida Ruellia and Candida Haemulonii.


The Annals of Internal Medicine reports that Candida Auris was first discovered in the United States in 2016, but its spread didn’t become rampant until 2020 through 2021. 


-3270 clinical cases and 7413 screenings of Candida Auris were reported in the United States in 2021. 

-The percentage of Candida Auris clinical cases increased from 44% in 2019 to 80% in 2021. 


-17 states confirmed their first clinical case between 2019 and 2021.


Symptoms of Candida Auris often appear cold or flu-like with high fevers and chills. The CDC advises talking to your healthcare provider if your symptoms don’t improve after antibiotics. Only a screening can confirm if you have Candida Auris.  


If you have or are in suspected contact with someone who has Candida Auris, wash your hands with soap and water to stop the spread of the fungus.



Article edited by Alexa


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