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Phaeohyphomycosis: Infection Due to Dark (Dematiaceous) Molds

  • Sanjay G. RevankarEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Infectious Disease book series (ID)

Abstract

Dematiaceous, or darkly pigmented fungi are a large, heterogeneous group of organisms that have been associated with a wide variety of clinical syndromes. These are uncommon causes of human disease, but can be responsible for life-threatening infections in both immunocompromised and immunocompetent individuals. In recent years, these fungi have been increasingly recognized as important pathogens and the spectrum of diseases they are associated with has also broadened.

The clinical syndromes caused by the dark-walled fungi are typically distinguished based on characteristic histologic findings into chromoblastomycosis, mycetoma, and phaeohyphomycosis. Chromoblastomycosis and mycetoma are caused by a small group of fungi that are associated with characteristic structures in tissues and are usually seen in tropical areas. These are discussed in Chap. 22 (Fungal Infections of Implantation). Phaeohyphomycosis is a term introduced by Ajello et al. in 1974, which literally means “infection caused by dark-walled fungi”. It is a catch-all term generally reserved for the remainder of clinical syndromes caused by dematiaceous fungi that range from superficial infections and allergic disease to brain abscess and widely disseminated disease. These fungi are alternately called phaeoid, dematiaceous, dark, or black molds. While typically, phaeohyphomycosis is a term limited to infections caused by the dark molds, there are dark yeasts that rarely cause infection, and these are also included under this grouping by many experts.

Keywords

Phaeohyphomycosis Dematiaceous Melanin Itraconazole Voriconazole Posaconazole Bipolaris Exophiala Cladophialophora 

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Suggested Reading

  1. Clancy CJ, Wingard JR, Hong NM. Subcutaneous phaeohyphomycosis in transplant recipients: review of the literature and demonstration of in vitro synergy between antifungal agents. Med Mycol. 2000;38:169–75.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Jacobson ES. Pathogenic roles for fungal melanins. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2000;13:708–17.CrossRefPubMedCentralPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Kuhn FA, Javer AR. Allergic fungal rhinosinusitis: perioperative management, prevention of recurrence, and role of steroids and antifungal agents. Otolaryngol Clin North Am. 2000;33:419–33.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Revankar SG, Sutton DA. Melanized fungi in human disease. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2010;23:884–928.CrossRefPubMedCentralPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Revankar SG, Sutton DA, Rinaldi MG. Primary central nervous system phaeohyphomycosis: a review of 101 cases. Clin Infect Dis. 2004;38:206–16.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Revankar SG, Patterson JE, Sutton DA, Pullen R, Rinaldi MG. Disseminated phaeohyphomycosis: review of an emerging mycosis. Clin Infect Dis. 2002;34:467–76.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Sharkey PK, Graybill JR, Rinaldi MG, et al. Itraconazole treatment of phaeohyphomycosis. J Am Acad Dermatol. 1990;23:577–86.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Srinivasan M. Fungal keratitis. Curr Opin Ophthalmol. 2004;15:321–7.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Infectious DiseasesHarper University HospitalDetroitUSA

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