Cryptococosis: clinical epidemiologycal laboratorial study and fungi varieties in 96 patients

Ninety-six patients with cryptococcosis confirmed by clinical and laboratorial diagnosis were assessed in a prospective study in a University Hospital from March 1998 to November 2003; of these, 81.3% were HIV seropositive patients. Cryptococcus neoformans was isolated from different samples, of which the cerebrospinal fluid 74 (77%) was the most frequent. C. neoformans var neoformans was isolated in 89 cases, where as C. neoformans var gattii was isolated in 7. Cryptococcal meningoencephalitis was detected in 56.3% cases. It was the most frequent unique clinical manifestation and the fungus was detected in the bloodstream in 13.5% of the patients. Among the risk factors, AIDS (81.3%) was the most frequently associated with mycosis. Direct examination carried out on 121 samples revealed the microorganism in 98.3% of them, while the culture was positive for all samples. Most of the patients (59.4%) were treated with amphotericin B or with triazoles, however 72.9% of them ended in death, in particular those patients with positive tests for the HIV (62.5%). Nowadays, cryptococcosis has been frequently diagnosed in our region and represents one of the opportunistic diseases with the highest morbidity and mortality rates in patients with AIDS.

Cryptococcus neoformans; Cryptococcosis; Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome; Immunodeficiency human virus


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