Study of keratomycosis at a tertiary care teaching hospital

Original Article

Author Details : Ami Jeswin, Veluri Gayathri*

Volume : 7, Issue : 2, Year : 2021

Article Page : 65-70

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Background: Corneal infections are one of the leading causes of ocular morbidity and blindness worldwide.  If normal defence mechanisms of the eye are compromised, almost any microorganism can invade the cornea. It is important to know the exact aetiology of corneal ulcer to institute appropriate therapy in time, least serious consequences may follow.
Aim: To isolate and identify the fungi from corneal scrapings of suspected keratitis patients. 
Material and Methods: A prospective study of Fungal keratitis was conducted at Al-Azhar Medical College & Super Speciality Hospital in Thodupuzha, Kerala a tertiary care hospital with a capacity of 650 beds. The duration of the study was two years from January 2018 to January 2020. Patients with suspected fungal corneal ulcers presenting in the Out-Patient Department (OPD) of Ophthalmology were investigated for fungal etiology in the Department of Microbiology were included in this study. Each patient
was examined with slit lamp. Data collected from history given by patient and patient examination. Using standard techniques. The specimens collected were then smeared on two slides, which were stained with Gram stain (for bacterial keratitis) and 10% potassium hydroxide preparation (for fungal keratitis) studied under light microscope.
Results: Of the 866 patients with corneal ulcer investigated, 83 cases with fungal and 36 with bacterial aetiology was identified. Males were more commonly affected and were mostly in the age group of 31- 40 year. It was seen that trauma was the most common predisposing factor especially in the agriculturists and the farmers. Among the identified fungi, most were hyaline. Of the 83 positive specimens, the most frequent agent isolated was Fusarium species in 31 (37.3%) cases. Aspergillus flavus 23 (27.7%) was the second most common followed by Aspergillus fumigatus, Penicillium spp., Rhizopus arrhizus. Candida albicans were 5 (6%) followed by Rhodotorula glutinis 1 (1.2%).
Conclusion: Fungal Keratitis is a serious problem usually following corneal trauma, it requires rapid detection and identification of fugal agents for treatment to prevent disastrous consequences.

Keywords: Fungal Keratitis, Bacterial Keratitis, Aspergillus, Fussarium, Candida species.

How to cite : Jeswin A , Gayathri V , Study of keratomycosis at a tertiary care teaching hospital. IP Int J Med Microbiol Trop Dis 2021;7(2):65-70

Copyright © 2021 by author(s) and IP Int J Med Microbiol Trop Dis. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (

Article History

Received : 24-11-2020

Accepted : 07-01-2021

Available online : 25-06-2021

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