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January 1969

Rhodotorula Fungemia Presenting as "Endotoxic" Shock

Author Affiliations


From the Department of Internal Medicine, Health Center Hospitals of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh. Doctor Leeber is now with; the USAF School of Aerospace Medicine, Physiology Division, Brooks AFB, Tex.

Arch Intern Med. 1969;123(1):78-81. doi:10.1001/archinte.1969.00300110080016

Associated with the widespread use of broad spectrum antibiotics and steroids in many chronic diseases and with prolonged survival in chronically debilitated patients, there has been a widening awareness of pathogenic fungi.1-4 The concept of opportunism in clinical fungal infections has become widely publicized.5,6 Disseminated fungal infections due to members of the family Cryptococcaecaeae have largely been limited to the genera Cryptococcus and Candida. Rhodotorula is a ubiquitous organism commonly cultured from skin and excreta of man and readily recovered from many sources in his environment. To our knowledge the literature contains only ten previous reports of clinical disease caused by the genus Rhodotorula of the family Cryptococcaecaeae. The present report is an account of our experience with Rhodotorula presenting as a treatable cause of shock in patients with otherwise nonfatal disease.

In 1960, Louria et al7 reported a case of fungemia due to Rhodotorula manifested by