What is “BLACK FUNGUS” in COVID 19 pandemic?
Before we conclude that whether black fungus is dangerous or NOT we have to have a little knowledge about it. During the second wave of COVID 19 we can see a rise in black fungus cases in India. And we are considering this as a new disease alongside COVID 19. Is that so? Let’s see. We can say “black fungus” is dangerous – but that does not mean anything. That means it is dangerous & we can not do anything about it. Before we jump into the heaven of absolute conclusive thinking let us review some points that may help us to reframe the understanding of black fungus.
Black fungus means “Mucormycosis”.
It is a fungus present almost everywhere but it can not affect a normal human being with normal level of immunity.
What are the symptoms of Black Fungus cases?
Most commonly around 50% cases black fungus happens in nose, sinuses and in the brain combined. Then it can occur commonly in skin and lungs around 30% cases. Around 10% it is found to be everywhere in the body and around 10% cases it is found in our abdominal organs.
Most common symptoms are – fever, weakness, headache, pain in the eyes, sudden blindness, inability to move the affected eye, sinusitis, face paralysis, seizures etc.
It invades the blood vessels of the affected organ. So most of the time to save the person surgery is required to remove the affected part alongside medical treatment. Like if it affects your eyes then most of the times to save you the doctor has to remove the affected eye. Mortality rate is as high as 50%. That’s unfortunate but true.
It affects when a person has conducted a disease or treatment of a disease that has already compromised his immunity –
- Person with blood cancers,
- corticosteroid therapy,
- post organ transplant chemotherapy,
- burns, trauma (skin is a protective organ and plays very important role in our immunity),
- extreme malnutrition in children,
- IV drug abuse etc.
It very rarely develops in a person with none of these.
What is happening to our immune system in COVID 19 pandemic?
There is a steep rise of prescription and non-prescription usage of drugs which alters and/or suppress our immune system like –
- High dose of Antibiotics (kill our friendly bacteria that resides in our skin, nose, sinuses, mouth, intestines, colons etc. – leads to immune compromise).
COVID 19 itself is also making our body extremely week and we become prone to theses rare infection. The cytokine storm is basically burning our body’s vital organs and energy. COVID compromises oxygenation and thus hinders healing of vital organs. Remember, Black Fungus only happens when you are weak.
Unhealthy foods, lack of sleep and stress are also the major contributors in making us weak and immune compromised.
Let’s not blame black fungus for the infection. It is dangerous but only when we become vulnerable. It is natural that fungus will grow out of an almost dead biological tissue without any significant immunological competence.
Now the question is – Can we do something about it?
Yes. We can do the following –
- Do not take steroids/ hydroxychloroquine or any other antibiotics without consulting your doctor – remember you will make yourself weak and immunity compromised.
- Eat healthy food. Avoid foods that cause inflammation in our body like refined sugar and refined carbohydrates like polished rice, refined atta (Maida) etc.
- Take foods rich in Omega 3 fatty acids & good sources of protein like – nuts, fish oils, eggs etc.
- Take 100 to 150 gm of curd everyday with lunch. And two lemons with rock salt in empty stomach everyday morning.
- Have proper good night sleep at least six and a half hours.
- Take plenty of water at least 3 to 4 liter a day.
- Wear mask and use sanitizer properly.
- Take water vapor twice a day.
- Supplements like Vitamin D3 and Vitamin C will make skin and mucosal surface healthy.
- Be aware about the common symptoms which I have already explained.
- Remain calm. Watch comedy movies or listen to comedy shows. Read books. Listen to music.
- Meditate & relax daily.
Remember stressing out on self-conclusive information without knowledge increases our stress. Stress is not good for our health neither for our immunity. Keep the knowledge by your side. Be aware. Be mindful & stay Calm. Just follow the required things those are in your hands. We can’t do anything about the problem but we can remain aware about it. We can focus on the solution and take necessary precautions. Those are in our hands. That’s all is required for now.