A drug-resistant fungus is spreading in Las Vegas, and it can’t be happening at a worse time.

As the public health ecosystem is currently battling a seasonal uptick of flu, RSV and Covid-19, this new superbug is now thrown into the cauldron of potential illnesses.

Candida auris (C. auris) has been reported in over 700 cases within Nevada’s hospitals and health facilities, according to KTLA-TV. The C. auris infection often causes outbreaks within hospital settings, which is where the majority of outbreaks have been reported in Nevada. 63 deaths have been connected with the infections. However, the drug-resistant fungus hasn’t been confirmed to cause the actual deaths.

With this being said, you may be asking, “why are doctors so concerned with this infection?” Well, C. auris is concerning for a few reasons.

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, C. Auris is often drug-resistant. This means “that it is resistant to multiple antifungal drugs commonly used to treat
Candida infections. Some strains are resistant to all three available classes of antifungals,” the DHHS states.

Along with this, this fungal infection often infects people who are already hospitalized, making this serious for patients who contract this illness.

The emergence of C. auris also comes at a time when the seasonal flu, RSV and Covid-19 are already pushing the capacity of hospitals. Adding another serious illness into this horrible mixture if illness can further stress our local hospital systems that are already heavily exerted on.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the symptoms of C. auris may not be as noticeable. This is due to the infection often affecting people who are already sick or in the hospital. This fungus can cause many different types of infections in different parts of the body such as the blood, within wounds and in the ears.

This infection often affects people with weakened immune systems from conditions such as blood cancer or diabetes. People who have tube devices like breathing tubes or catheters are also at an increased risk for contracting an C. auris infection.


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