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October 23, 1967

Fatal Opportunistic Fungus Disease

Author Affiliations

From the Ellis Hospital, Schenectady, NY.

JAMA. 1967;202(4):279-281. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03130170079011

Fatal disseminated mycotic disease has been seen with increasing frequency since the introduction of steroid and cytotoxic drugs, medications that apparently interfere with the immunologic defenses of the host. These mycoses are most often associated with malignant tumors, especially leukemia and lymphoma. Of 14 significant fungus infections found at autopsy, Phycomycetes was found in six. Thrombosis and infarction caused by the fungus were seen in multiple organs, most commonly in the lungs, heart, and kidney, and were a major contributory cause of death.