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Increasing Incidence of Mucormycosis, Belgium | CDC EID

EID Journal Home > Volume 16, Number 9–September 2010

Volume 16, Number 9–September 2010
Increasing Incidence of Mucormycosis in University Hospital, Belgium
Veroniek Saegeman, Johan Maertens, Wouter Meersseman, Isabel Spriet, Eric Verbeken, and Katrien Lagrou
Author affiliation: Leuven University Hospitals, Leuven, Belgium

Suggested citation for this article

To determine why incidence of mucormycosis infections was increasing in a large university hospital in Belgium, we examined case data from 2000–2009. We found the increase was not related to voriconazole use but most probably to an increase in high-risk patients, particularly those with underlying hematologic malignancies.
In September 2009, Bitar et al. reported an increasing incidence of mucormycosis in France from 1997 through 2006 (1). Their epidemiologic study was based on International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision (ICD-10), codes extracted from hospital information systems from an estimated 95% of public and private hospitals in France. This study is particularly interesting because population-based estimates of the incidence of mucormycosis are scarce (2). However, as the authors state, ICD code–based evaluations have limitations; such limitations are mainly related to difficulties encountered with the diagnosis of mucormycosis in clinical practice. Conventional diagnostic tools lack sensitivity. Moreover, distinction between colonization and infection is problematic in the absence of invasive procedures or autopsy data. Thus, epidemiologic studies on mucormycosis are often hampered by the limited number of documented cases.

Several surveys have been conducted in large US transplant centers. Based on these studies, the increasing incidence of mucormycosis has been linked to the widespread use of voriconazole prophylaxis in high-risk patients (3,4). In contrast with the study in France, these surveys have the limitation of focusing on particular risk groups, mainly cancer patients, and do not provide a general estimate on the incidence of mucormycosis. In our study, we determined the incidence rate of invasive mucormycosis in a large university hospital in Belgium over a 10-year period and reviewed the clinical data of the patients with proven or probable disease.

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Increasing Incidence of Mucormycosis, Belgium | CDC EID

Suggested Citation for this Article
Saegeman V, Maertens J, Meersseman W, Spriet I, Verbeken E, Lagrou K. Increasing incidence of mucormycosis in university hospital, Belgium. Emerg Infect Dis [serial on the Internet]. 2010 Sept [date cited].

DOI: 10.3201/eid1609.100276

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