EPIDEMIOLOGY OF INVASIVE FUNGAL INFECTIONS IN THE MEDITERRANEAN AREA

Main Article Content

Ulrike Binder
Cornelia Lass-Flörl

Keywords

Aspergillus, epidemiology, molds

Abstract

Although Candida species remain the relevant cause of IFI, other fungi (especially moulds) have become increasingly prevalent. In particular, Aspergillus species are the leading cause of mould infections but also Glomeromycota (formerly Zygomycetes) and Fusarium species are increasing in frequency, and are associated with high mortality rates. Many of these emerging infections occur as breakthrough infections in patients treated with new antifungal drugs. The causative pathogens, incidence rate and severity are dependent on the underlying condition, as well as on the geographic location of the patient population. France and Italy show the highest incidence rates of Fusarium infections in Europe, following the US, where numbers are still increasing. Scedosporium prolificans, which primarily is found in soil in Spain and Australia, is most frequently isolated from blood cultures in a Spanish hospital. Geotrichum capitatum represents another species predominantly found in Europe with especially high rates in Mediterranean countries. A trend of increasing fluconazole resistance of C. neoformans isolates from the Asia-Pacific, Africa/Middle East, and Latin America regions has been described in a 10 year antifungal surveillance study. The increasing resistance to antifungal drugs especially of these new emerging pathogens is a severe problem for managing these IFIs.

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