Nosocominal fungal infections: prevention and control

K. Pakshir

Author address: 



Nosocominal infections are a serious health and financial problem and hospitalized patients have a potential risk for these infections. Hospital environment is often contaminated with fungal spores and airborne fungi are one of the main causes of fungal infections in this group. Numerous risk factors have been identified for nosocominal fungal infections. It could divide to several branches related to causative agents, source of infection, ways of entrance to hospital, transition to patients and host condition. Causative agents including yeast and molds and could divide to indoor and outdoor fungi. Candida and Malassezia species consider as human normal flora. The most dangerous indoor and outdoor fungi are Alternaria, Aspergillus, Chaetomium, Cladosporium, Fusarium, Mucor, Penicillium, Stachybotrys, Candida, Trichosporon and Malassezia. The main source and Reservoirs in hospitals for mold fungi is air ventilation system, dust dislodged during construction, carpeting, food, ornamental plants and the any places with residual water (kitchen, bathrooms, laundry and etc.). The outdoor fungi may be isolated from environmental sources including garden, trees and during construct activity. The fungi mainly entrance to hospital by air flow from doors or windows and by visitors. The way of transition to patients during hospitalization for yeast (normal flora) is close contact with staff and for molds is inhalation of air- floating spores named air-borne fungi. Risk factors for the hosts are antimicrobial agents, chemotherapy, surgery, indwelling catheter, hemodialysis, neutropenia, diabetes and transplantation. Most of the nosocominal fungal infections faced in hospitals are aspergillosis, candidiasis, zygomycosis, malassezia infections, fusariosis and less occurred by the other opportunistic fungi. Poor sanitary management is the main cause of these infections. Environment prevention should include a well-sealed room, HEPA filtration of incoming air, direct or laminar airflow within the room, positive room air pressure relative to the corridor and high rates of room air exchange.

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Full conference title: 

Iranian Congress on Medical Mycology
    • ICMM 2011