Diagnosis and Management of Systemic Endemic Mycoses Causing Pulmonary Disease.


Journal Article (Review)

Systemic endemic mycoses cause high rates of morbidity and mortality in certain regions of the world and the real impact on global health is not well understood. Diagnosis and management remain challenging, especially in low-prevalence settings, where disease awareness is lacking. The main challenges include the variability of clinical presentation, the fastidious and slow-growing nature of the fungal pathogens, the paucity of diagnostic tests, and the lack of options and toxicity of antifungal drugs. Coccidioidomycosis and paracoccidioidomycosis are restricted to the Americas only, and while histoplasmosis and blastomycosis also occur predominantly in the Americas, these mycoses have also been reported on other continents, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Talaromycosis is endemic in tropical and subtropical regions in South-East Asia and southern China. Systemic endemic mycoses causing pulmonary disease are usually acquired via the airborne route by inhalation of fungal spores. Infections can range from asymptomatic or mild with flu-like illnesses to severe pulmonary or disseminated diseases. Skin involvement is frequent in patients with paracoccidioidomycosis, blastomycosis, sporotrichosis, and talaromycosis and manifests as localized lesions or diffuse nodules in disseminated disease, but can also occur with other endemic mycoses. Culture and/or characteristic histopathology from clinical samples is the diagnostic standard for endemic mycoses. Immunological assays are often not available for the diagnosis of most endemic mycoses and molecular amplification methods for the detection of fungal nucleic acids are not standardized at present. The first-line treatment for mild to moderate histoplasmosis, paracoccidioidomycosis, blastomycosis, sporotrichosis, and talaromycosis is itraconazole. Severe illness is treated with amphotericin B. Patients with severe coccidioidomycosis should receive fluconazole. Treatment duration depends on the specific endemic mycosis, the severity of disease, and the immune status of the patient, ranging between 6 weeks and lifelong treatment.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Salzer, HJF; Burchard, G; Cornely, OA; Lange, C; Rolling, T; Schmiedel, S; Libman, M; Capone, D; Le, T; Dalcolmo, MP; Heyckendorf, J

Published Date

  • 2018

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 96 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 283 - 301

PubMed ID

  • 29953992

Pubmed Central ID

  • 29953992

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1423-0356

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1159/000489501


  • eng

Conference Location

  • Switzerland