14-year-old undergoes five surgeries, recovers from cerebral mucormycosis

Staff attending to a patient in the mucormycosis ward at K.C. General Hospital in Bengaluru. SUDHAKARA JAIN  

A 14-year-old girl from Ballari, one of the two children infected with cerebral mucormycosis in Karnataka, has recovered after nearly a two-month long battle against the post-COVID-19 infection.

She was discharged on Wednesday from the State-run Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital, where she was admitted on May 29.

The girl, along with a 11-year-old boy from Challakere in Chitradurga district, are the first paediatric mucormycosis cases in the State. The boy, who subsequently developed multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), succumbed to post-COVID-19 complications on July 7.

Both children had Type 1 diabetes that was diagnosed late. The infection had spread to the brain and eyes in both cases. Both had lost vision in one eye, said Chikkanarasa Reddy, professor of paediatrics at Bowring and Lady Curzon Medical College and Research Institute.

The girl, who was admitted for COVID-19 at Ballari district hospital, developed pain in the eyes at the time of discharge. Doctors, who suspected fungal infection, had referred her to Bowring hospital on May 29, Dr. Reddy said.

He said the girl underwent five major surgeries – neuro (drainage of brain abscess), ENT, ophthalmology, dental, and plastic surgeries. “She has to undergo two more procedures for palate reconstruction and prosthetic rehabilitation. A prosthetic eye will be placed to create a balanced facial appearance and increase comfort in the eye socket where her eye is missing,” he explained.

Dr. Reddy said these procedures will be done free of cost after three months. “I have attached her to the nearest centre in Ballari for regular follow up and have also arranged for free-of-cost follow up treatment, if required, with two friends who are private doctors. We will review her after one-and-a-half months in Bowring hospital,” he said. “We are happy that she has recovered. As per available literature, cerebral mucormycosis has 100% mortality rate,” the doctor added.

R. Kayappa, the girl’s father, said he is indebted to the doctors at Bowring hospital for the care and treatment. “Dr. Reddy not only took good care and provided free treatment but also gave us post-discharge medicines. The doctors arranged for a farewell at the hospital and cut a cake to celebrate my daughter’s recovery,” he said.

Drop in new cases

With the second wave of COVID-19 subsiding, the State is also witnessing a steady decline in mucormycosis cases. The State has added a total of 60 cases in the last 10 days (since July 23) taking the total number to 3,648 on Wednesday. Of these, 337 patients succumbed to the disease.

Bengaluru Urban, which contributes 31% (1,161) of the total caseload, has reported 110 deaths. Of the 1,161 cases in Bengaluru Urban, 607 are those being treated in designated government hospitals - 209 are from Victoria Hospital, 391 at Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital, four at K.C. General, three at Indira Gandhi Institute of Child Health, and the remaining in private hospitals.

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Printable version | Sep 28, 2021 1:04:06 AM |

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