Definition of Blastomycosis:
Blastomycosis is a rare infection that may develop when people breathe in (inhale) a fungus called Blastomyces dermatitidis, which is found in wood and soil.
Symptoms of Blastomycosis
Lung infection may produce no symptoms, but when the infection spreads, skin or bone sores (lesions) may appear. The bladder, kidney, prostate, and testes may be affected.
Other symptoms may include:
- FeverChillsProductive coughMyalgia
- Chest pain
- Cough (may produce brown or bloody mucus)
- General discomfort, uneasiness, or ill feeling (malaise)
- Joint stiffness and pain
- Muscle stiffness and pain
- Shortness of breath
- Unintentional weight loss
Causes, incidence, and risk factors:
Blastomycosis occurs most often in people living in the south-central and midwestern US and Canada. Exposure to soil is the key risk factor. The disease usually affects people with compromised immune systems, such as people with HIV or organ transplant recipients.
Men are more likely to be affected than women. Lung infection may produce no symptoms, but when the infection is widespread, skin lesions or bone lesions may appear and the urogenital system (bladder, kidney, prostate, testes) may be affected.
The incidence of blastomycosis is 1-2 out of every 100,000 people in geographic areas where blastomycosis occurs most frequently. It is even less common outside those areas.
Complications list for Blastomycosis:
The list of complications that have been mentioned in various sources for Blastomycosis includes:
- Permanent lung damage (see Lung symptoms)
- Chronic pulmonary Blastomycosis infection (see Lung symptoms)
- Widespread disseminated Blastomycosis infection
Medicines may not be needed for a blastomycosis infection that stays in the lungs, unless it becomes severe. When the disease is severe, or when it spreads outside of the lungs,
The following medicines (anti-fungals) may be prescribed:
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