The drug-resistant fungal disease has proven to be deadly.

So how have I never heard of it?

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The experts at the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have referred to it as global health threat; not only is it sweeping across the U.S. but it's made its way up to our neck of the woods in Michigan, Indiana, and Ohio, with nearby Illinois seemingly at the forefront of this battle.

C. Auris infections CDC
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How Much Do You Know About C. auris?

Also referred to as Candida auris, this is a type of yeast that can cause deadly infections and is easily spread among hospital and nursing home patients. However, because the severity of symptoms depends on the location of the infection the CDC claims,

There is not a common set of symptoms specific for C. auris infections.

It is possible for healthy individuals to be exposed to C. auris without complication but they may still spread it to other patients. The only way a healthcare provider can accurately detect a C. auris infection is to take a culture sample/colonization screening or to collect a "specimen" i.e. blood or urine.

How Common Is It?

First discovered back in 2009 the CDC says they are working closely with healthcare personnel and staff to contain and prevent the future spreading of the fungus. The problem is the disease is resistant to antifungal medications which makes treating and containing it that much harder.

The most recent data from 2022 shows nearly 5,754 screening cases nationwide with 276 of those in Illinois and 87 in Indiana, according to the Irish Star.

Unfortunately, it doesn't look like C. auris is going away anytime soon. The CDC has issued several warnings since the disease was first discovered, but it shows no signs of slowing down. More from the CDC below:

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