PRLog - Aug. 9, 2011 - PEORIA, Ariz. -- In May of this year, a devastating tornado caused widespread destruction and death in Joplin, Missouri. A month later, a number of survivors of the tornado became sick and several even died from fungal infections. This quickly got the attention of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The culprit, mucormycosis, had likely entered the victims’ bodies through cuts and abrasions as a result of the tornado.
Mucormycosis is the term used to describe fungal infections caused by fungi in the order Mucorales. Species in the Mucor, Rhizopus, Absidia and several other generas are most often implicated.
Mucor is a type of fungi that has a widespread occurrence and is commonly found in soil, digestive systems, plant surfaces and rotten vegetable matter. Most species of Mucor are unable to infect humans and endothermic animals due to their inability to grow in warm environments close to 37 degrees Celsius. There are however, thermotolerant species, such as Mucor indicus, that can cause opportunistic and often rapidly spreading infections in humans.
“There are two main types of infection that people can get, and these depend on the route of exposure,” reported Ed Chambers, the President of EC2, Inc., an Illinois based environmental and infectious disease consulting firm. “In the pulmonary or sinus form, exposure occurs by inhaling fungal spores from the environment. These spores can cause an infection to develop in the lungs, sinuses, eyes, and face, and in rare cases can spread to the central nervous system. In the cutaneous form, the fungus can enter the skin through cuts, scrapes, puncture wounds, or other forms of trauma to the skin. Mucor can also be found in some indoor environments, especially when there has been flooding or other water damage events.”
EC2 recently sponsored a public outreach video on mucormycosis that can be viewed at:
To learn more about environmental, IAQ and infectious disease issues, please visit http://www.4ec2inc.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (815) 703-9000.
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About EC2, Inc.
EC2 is a leading provider of environmental consulting and inspection services for clients across the United States. Based in the Chicago area, the company provides their services to clients ranging from local companies and institutions to international Fortune 500 Corporations.