Taking to his Twitter handle, former president of the Indian Medical Association (IMA), Dr Rajeev Jayadevan emphasised to look into the role of excessive usage of steam, intake of zinc supplement and combination antibiotics used to treat coronavirus in the black fungal outbreak. He cited a study carried out on 210 SARS-CoV-2 positive patients across 4 hospitals by Dr VP Pandey, HOD Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Government Medical College, Indore and pointed out how these three factors can contribute to the growth of fungus.
In his tweet, he mentioned that the cocktail of antibiotics – Azithromycin, Doxycycline and Carbapenem- can increase the risk of fungal infection.
“Fungi thrive in a zinc-rich environment, and mammalian cells try to keep zinc away from fungus to avoid infection,” he tweeted.
“Steam in excess can damage the delicate mucus layer and even cause burns along the mucosa, making it easy for fungus to breach our natural defence. Burns caused 10-20% of past mucormycosis in India,” Jayadevan added.
Jayadevan stated that about 21 per cent of the patients analysed in the study were not diabetic and just about 52 per cent of the patients were on oxygen.