Fungal Infections in Patients of Paediatric Age
Intech Open Access
In recent decades, fungi have emerged as important causes of human infection, due primarily to the increased numbers of patients subjected to severe immunosuppression, so the demand for information on the pathogenic role of these microorganisms and the diseases they cause is growing. Despite the development of more active, less toxic antifungal agents and the use of antifungal prophylaxis, the mycoses (especially those invasive) continue to be a serious infective complication in several patients’ outcomes, resulting in high mortality rates (Lehrnbecher et al., 2010). Both paediatric and adult patients are exposed to fungal infections, even if important differences of epidemiology, diagnostic approaches and therapeutic management have to be considered. To date, globally, these infections have been well studied in different populations of adult patients while thorough epidemiological analyses in paediatric patients, including immunocompromised subjects, e.g. children with haematological malignancies and preterm neonates, are fairly sparse.