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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
Histoplasmosis is a fungal infection of your lungs. It is caused by breathing in soil that is infected with fungus. The fungus is most commonly found in soil that contains bird and bat droppings.
WHILE YOU ARE HERE:
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- Antifungals help treat an infection caused by fungus.
- Steroids decrease swelling in the lungs.
- Acetaminophen helps decrease pain, fever, and swelling.
- NSAIDs help decrease pain, fever, and swelling.
- Blood and urine tests will show if you have a histoplasmosis infection. Blood tests may be done to check your blood cell levels and get information about your overall health.
- A sputum sample may be collected and tested to find the germ that is causing your illness.
- A biopsy is a sample of tissue taken from your lymph nodes, skin, lungs, bone, or liver. The sample is tested for fungus.
- A chest x-ray is used to check for fluid or swelling in your lungs.
- Oxygen may be given if your blood oxygen level is lower than it should be. You may get oxygen through a mask placed over your nose and mouth or through small tubes placed in your nostrils. Ask your healthcare provider before you take off the mask or oxygen tubing.
- IV fluids may be given to treat or prevent dehydration.
- A ventilator is a machine that gives you oxygen and breathes for you when you cannot breathe well on your own. An endotracheal (ET) tube is put into your mouth or nose and attached to the ventilator.
Histoplasmosis may be more serious in older adults and anyone with lung disease. The infection may cause serious breathing problems. It may also spread to other places in your body.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.