CDC says cases of lethal fungus tripled in recent years

Cases of a lethal fungus have tripled in the U.S. from 2019 to 2021, in keeping with information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Candida aurist was reported in the U.S. in 2016 and cases have climbed ever since. Annual scientific case counts rose to 476 in 2019 earlier than growing to 756 in 2020, a 59% bounce. Cases then soared to 1,471 in 2021, which is an extra 95% bounce.

Colonization screening of cases additionally elevated, researchers from the CDC wrote in the Annals of Internal Medicine. There have been 1,310 cases in 2020, a 21% improve from 2019, and a 209% improve to 4,041 cases in 2021.

There have been a complete of 3,270 scientific cases and seven,413 screening cases of C. auris from 2019 to 2021, with 17 states reporting their preliminary cases.


Cases of a lethal fungus in the U.S. have tripled from 2019 to 2021, in keeping with information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (iStock)

The authors from the CDC wrote that, since its detection in the U.S., C. auris “has continued to cause illness and death nationwide.” They additionally stated the CDC has rated it as “an ‘urgent threat,’ the highest level of concern, because it is often multidrug-resistant; spreads easily in healthcare facilities; and can cause severe, invasive infections with high mortality rates.”

Treatment-resistant cases rose from six pan-resistant and three echinocandin-resistant isolates reported in 2020 to seven pan-resistant and 19 echinocandin-resistant isolates in 2021.

“Even this subtle increase is concerning because echinocandins are the first-line therapy for invasive Candida infections and most C. auris infections,” the authors wrote. “Several new antifungal medications are in development, but more research is needed to understand outcomes for patients with these highly resistant strains and to guide treatment.”

One of the authors, Meghan Lyman, wrote in a press launch that “the rapid rise and geographic spread of cases is concerning and emphasizes the need for continued surveillance, expanded lab capacity, quicker diagnostic tests, and adherence to proven infection prevention and control.”

The CDC’s 2019 Antibiotic Resistance Threats Report recognized C. auris as an pressing menace in the U.S. 


Candida aurist was reported in the U.S. in 2016 and cases have climbed ever since.

Candida aurist was reported in the U.S. in 2016 and cases have climbed ever since. (iStock)

And final yr, the World Health Organization put it on the fungal precedence pathogens checklist. WHO assistant director-general of antimicrobial resistance Hanan Balkhy stated in a press launch on the time, “fungal infections are growing, and are ever more resistant to treatments, becoming a public health concern worldwide.”

A CDC reality sheet citing information from a listed quantity of sufferers notes that 30% to 60% of individuals with C. auris infections have died. 

“We don’t know if patients with invasive C. auris infection are more likely to die than patients with other invasive Candida infections,” the CDC wrote.

Cases gave the impression to be imported from different nations when it was first detected. But lately, healthcare transmission has been answerable for most, if not all, cases, in keeping with the authors from the CDC. 

“Most spread in the United States has occurred in high-acuity post-acute care facilities, specifically long-term acute care hospitals and ventilator-capable skilled-nursing facilities,” they wrote. “C. auris cases tend to occur in patients who have multiple or prolonged healthcare encounters or indwelling devices, including those receiving mechanical ventilation.”

CDC researchers said C. auris has continued to cause illness and death nationwide since it was first detected.

CDC researchers stated C. auris has continued to trigger sickness and dying nationwide because it was first detected. (REUTERS/Tami Chappell/File Photo)


The present research might underestimate cases as a result of screening sources have been restricted, however the CDC has elevated screening availability via the American Rescue Plan Act. Through the invoice authorized in 2021, screening capability has risen from seven regional labs to greater than 26 laboratories throughout the U.S.

“C. auris remains an ongoing health threat in the United States. Public health and healthcare facilities already have limited resources and IPC [infection prevention and control] capacity, and they experience further challenges with MDRO [multidrug-resistant organism] surveillance and prevention when those limited resources shift to fight other threats, such as the COVID-19 pandemic,” the authors from the CDC wrote. “Still, mitigation and even regional containment are possible.”

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