MRI or CT Scan for Black Fungus

The second wave of Covid-19 is wrecking havoc all over the country with more than 4000 deaths per day in the month of May 2021. Adding to the agony is the rise in the number of cases of Mucormycosis or `Black Fungus’. More than 500 such cases have come to light in different parts of the country. This is a condition which can prove fatal if not treated in time. Many patients of Covid-19 have been subjected to indiscriminate use of steroids resulting in high levels of blood sugar. Many patients with mild symptoms have been prescribed Steroids or have themselves taken the steroids without the advice of any qualified doctor. This results in rise in the blood sugar levels. Most of the patients of Black Fungal infection are those who have recently recovered from Corona and have co-morbidities like Diabetes, Cancer, HIV etc.

The symptoms of Black Fungal infection are excessive running nose, pain in the eyes, loose teeth etc. If such symptoms are noticed then the patient must immediately consult a qualified doctor. Since black fungal infection can spread from the eyes and the paranasal sinuses to the brain, the most commonly used investigation for the diagnosis of this condition is CT Scan of the PNS and the face. Many patient who have undergone a CT Scan of the Lungs during the course of their corona treatment are averse to going for another CT Scan due to the fear of excessive radiation dose in a short period of time. Such patients would do well to undergo Contrast MRI scan of the PNS and Brain.

Dr. Priyanjana Sharma, ENT Specialist
Mob : +91-8800188334

Dr. Priyanjana Sharma, leading ENT specialist says that Contrast MRI gives much more information than Non Contrast CT Scan and that too without any harmful radiation. However not all patients would be able to afford the high cost of contrast MRI and therefore we have to use CT Scan as a cheaper alternative. While Contrast MRI of the Brain and PNS would be costing in the range of Rs. 16 – 18 thousand, the cost of CT Scan of Brain and PNS would be just half of this amount.

Black Fungus can be treated successfully with Anti Fungal medications if the disease is diagnosed at an early stage. Patients who are recovering from Corona must be extra vigilant regarding the symptoms of Black Fungus like running nose or eye pain or jaw pain. They should immediately consult an ENT specialist or General Physician who would be able to diagnose the disease. While most of the patients can be treated through medication, some patients may require surgery to remove the fungal tissue. Some patients may require more radical surgeries like removal of the eyes or the jaw.

Patients recovering from Covid must not venture near decaying soil, manure, food, plants etc and must eat fresh food. Stale food must not be kept in the house to prevent the occurence of Mucormycosis.

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