Histoplasmosis is common for people living in the Mississippi and Ohio valleys. Histoplasmosis is believed caused by the farm dust in that area. Agriculture is the blamed for the flu-like symptoms of histoplasmosis. This is especially true because of the soil has been enriched with bird and bat droppings. Histoplasmosis is usually found in the lungs, the patient is treated and they go on with their life.
If the disease has spread to other parts of the body, it can create serious health problems. This disease is treated with a medication that works against fungus. Histoplasmosis is taken into the body by the air people breathe that is infected with fungus spores.
The fungus often grows around old chicken houses, in caves and other areas where bats live. It can also be found where there is a large flock of blackbirds. People who live or have lived on farms are susceptible to this disease and its complications.
People who have this disease usually have no noticeable aftereffects unless their eyes are affected. Small lesions may occur that might lead to new blood vessels and scar tissue in the retina.
Will Surgery Help?
Studies and trials have looked closely at patients who were affected by histoplasmosis. Several clinics and about 112 patients were used in the trial. The results of the trial were released and the results were inconclusive.
Although 55 percent of the patients had stabilized or improved vision after two years after surgery, 46 percent who did not receive surgery also showed improved and stabilized vision during the two-year study.
Further studies were done and the results found that two years after surgery, a new finding was released that stated patients who have surgery to correct histoplasmosis lesions were 50 percent better after having the procedure.
Many patients with histoplasmosis lesions are treated with photodynamic therapy with a light-sensitive medication. This alternate method of treating these lesions has not yet gone through a comprehensive study. Clinical trials need to be performed on ocular histoplasmosis patients before any conclusions can be made about this alternate method of treatment.
Treatment for eye problems such as ocular histoplasmosis lesions has clearly helped by some of the new laser treatments. Laser treatments have prevented severe vision loss especially if the lesions were not under the center of the retina. Patients who took part in the studies were given a survey and patients reported a better quality of life after the surgery. Patients who did not have surgery reported the same quality of life as before.
Histoplasmosis can affect other parts of the body. The flu-like symptoms go away and it is like you never had the disease. If it affects your eyes, you will want to talk to an accredited eye doctor to see what the choices are for your situation.
As with any surgery, there are risks involved. You may be at risk for inflammation or infection, and may experience some discomfort after surgery. Your doctor will help you decide if the risks are outweighed by the improvement in your vision.