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Sporotrichosis is the most common subcutaneous mycosis in Peru

August 25 2017

A systematic review and meta-analysis to estimate the burden of subcutaneous mycoses in Peru showed that 99.7% of subcutaneous mycoses cases are caused by Sporothrix schenckii. Chromoblastomycosis, lobomycosis, and subcutaneous phaeohyphomycosis are reportedly rare mycoses in Peru and there were no cases of eumycetoma or subcutaneous zygomycosis reported.

Soto and his colleague Malaga systematically reviewed 26 published studies between 1965 and 2015 from the 25 regions of Peru. A total of 1,970 cases were reported during this period, 1, 964 (99.7%) were cases of sporotrichosis, 3 (0.15%) lobomycosis cases, 2 (0.1%) chromoblastomycosis cases, and 1 (0.05%) case of subcutaneous phaehyphomycosis. Cases of eumycetoma and subcutaneous zygomycosis were not reported.

Overall 64% of sporotrichosis cases were in children, with the lymphocutaneous form (63%) and the most common site of infection being on the face (44%). Disseminated sporotrichosis was seen in 84 (4.3%) patients and fixed cutaneous disease in 567 (32%) of cases. Sporothrix pneumonia and meningitis are usually challenging diagnoses to make, and could be under-reported.


Image from Soto 2013: Facial sporotrichosis in children from edemic area in Peru

Subcutaneous mycoses are a group of chronic diseases of the subcutaneous tissue caused by a heterogeneous group of fungi commonly found in soil, leaves, and organic material. They are mostly caused by traumatic inoculation with thorns or any other material contaminated with these fungi. They are endemic in many tropical and subtropical countries and are most commonly reported in Africa, Central and South America, and India.

Eumycetoma (Madura foot), chromoblastomycosis and other “deep mycoses” are considered “neglected” tropical diseases by the World Health Organisation.

The findings from this study provides a better understanding of the burden and distribution of subcutaneous mycoses in Peru that may be useful for identifying at-risk population groups and developing appropriate intervention, surveillance, and prevention strategies.

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