Cerebral phaeohyphomycosis: Importance of early diagnosis and management
- Chetana Govindaraju ,
- Sushama Patil ,
- K. Chandrasekar ,
- Shankar Ganesh ,
- Giridharan Kulasekaran ,
- Sachin Chemate ,
- M. Balamurugan ,
Introduction: Phaeohyphomycosis is an infection caused by dematiaceous or pigmented filamentous fungi, which contain melanin in their cell walls. These fungal organisms are neurotropic and are reported to cause cerebral abscesses regardless of the immune status of the patient. The objective of this case report is to emphasize the importance of distinguishing cerebral phaeohyphomycosis from high grade glioma through sufficient microbiological and histopathological studies in order to provide early diagnosis and adequate antifungal therapy if and when cerebral phaeohyphomycosis is diagnosed.
Case presentation: This case report describes a 23-year-old male from South East Asia presenting with memory disturbance and cognitive decline with significant improvement in presenting features post-operatively. We illustrate the radiological and clinical similarities between high-grade glioma and fungal brain abscess caused by Cladophialophora bantiana. We also discuss the microbiological and histopathological features.
Conclusion: The importance of performing microbiological and histopathological testing of the specimen prior to starting the patient on antifungals is emphasized.
Keywords: brain abscess, cerebral phaeohyphomycosis, cladophialophora bantiana, fungal infection