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reported so far this year - Dr. Primali Jayasekera Says this is nothing to do with corvid

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  • When such patients get infected with the corona virus, their immune system can get further weakened. Then, they become vulnerable. It is always important for people with diabetes to control their blood sugar level. Such vulnerable people should act with caution not to get infected by the corona virus,” she said. 
  • Unless treated timely, it can lead to blindness, problems with the facial nerves and even death 
  • 24 cases in 2020, 42 in 2019 
  • No Covid patient among them

By Kelum Bandara   

Twenty four cases of the disease which is commonly called ‘Black Fungus’ and academically named ‘mucormycosis’ has been reported so far in the country this year, but none of them has tested positive for Covid-19, a medical expert said yesterday.   

Consultant Medical Mycologist from Medical Research Institute, Colombo Dr. Primali Jayasekera told Daily Mirror that it was not a disease alien to Sri Lanka since cases had been reported annually. She said 42 patients were identified in 2019 and 24 in 2020.   
Dr. Jayasekera said people with the diseases such as uncontrolled diabetes and patients who are neutropenic after chemotherapy for cancer, chronic kidney disease and end-stage renal failure, solid organ and bone marrow transplanted patients, and patients who are on long term steroid therapy are vulnerable for this disease. According to her, people are susceptible to the disease when the functioning capacity of their immune systems is lowered.   
“When such patients get infected with the corona virus, their immune system can get further weakened. Then, they become vulnerable. It is always important for people with diabetes to control their blood sugar level. Such vulnerable people should act with caution not to get infected by the corona virus,” she said.   


 She cited adequate control of blood sugar level among diabetes mellitus patients, taking all necessary measures not to contact Covid-19, avoiding the use of face masks for more than four hours at a stretch, not to re-use surgical and KN95 masks after washing, not to keep the used masks on and off on tables and re-use them as preventive measures.   


“Anyway cloth masks are not recommended for use in this instance. Patients with weakened immune system, should not indulge in activities such as gardening, as fungal spores can enter the body through nostrils,” she said.    Asked how serious is the disease, she said, “If not diagnosed and treated timely, patients can end-up with complications such as blindness, problems with the facial nerves and even death.” 

 

  • People are susceptible to the disease when the functioning capacity of their immune systems is lowered   
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