Aspergillosis: Types, Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

March 9, 2020

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Aspergillosis is an allergic reaction or infection caused due to exposure to different kinds of mold. The type of mold which most likely causes this infection when inhaled is known as Aspergillosis Fumigates. People with weak immune systems or chronic lung problems are usually at higher risk of developing this infection.

What Are the Types of Aspergillosis?

There are three types of aspergillosis:

1. Pulmonary Aspergillosis

This condition is most likely to develop in people who have damaged lungs or chronic lung disorders. These people have unusual spaces in their lungs where the inhaled mold spores can easily grow. In some rare cases, the fungus can also infect ear canals and sinuses.

2. Invasive Aspergillosis

This is the most severe type of aspergillosis and can be fatal if not treated. It occurs when the infection spreads to the bloodstream from the lungs. Other organs, such as the liver, kidneys, skin, or brain, can also become infected. Some of the risk factors of invasive aspergillosis include a weak immune system, long-term use of certain corticosteroids, or low white blood cells.

3. Allergic Bronchopulmonary Aspergillosis (ABPA)

This is an allergic reaction caused after being exposed to Aspergillus fungus. It causes inflammation in the airways and lungs of the affected people. It’s more common in people with asthma, cystic fibrosis, or bronchiectasis as they generally have more mucus in their airways.

Also Read – Mold Exposure Health Risks: Can Mold Make You Sick

What Are the Causes of Aspergillosis?

Aspergillosis is most commonly caused by inhaling spores of mold, which are often found in dust, soil, compost, rotting leaves, plants, trees, damp buildings, and air conditioning systems. It doesn’t spread from humans or animals.

Also Read – Can Black Mold Exposure Cause Headaches?

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Aspergillus?

Some of the most common symptoms of aspergillosis include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Coughing up lumps of mucus or blood
  • Wheezing
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Fever
  • Chest or joint pain
  • Worsening asthma

How Is Aspergillosis Diagnosed?

Some of the tests which help diagnose aspergillosis may include:

Skin and Blood Tests

This test is carried out by injecting a small quantity of aspergillus antigen into the skin, typically the lower arm. If the injection site shows a little red bump, you are found positive for aspergillosis. Your blood samples can also be analyzed for the presence of specific antibodies.


A chest X-ray of the lungs can also be helpful in diagnosing aspergillosis.

What Are the Risk Factors for Aspergillosis?

Some of the major risk factors which make you vulnerable to aspergillosis are:

  • Weak immune system
  • Lung cavities
  • Asthma or cystic fibrosis
  • Low white blood cell level
  • Long-term corticosteroid therapy

What Are the Treatment Options of Aspergillosis?

Treatment for aspergillosis usually depends on the type of disease. For example, if you have
invasive aspergillosis, it’s treated with antifungal medications, which will help to control the symptoms. If left untreated, invasive aspergillosis could damage your lungs. For treating allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA), steroid tablets and antifungal tablets are administered for at least a few months. Chronic pulmonary aspergillosis requires a long-term intake of antifungal tablets.

Also Read – Mold & Your Health: Dangers of Black Mold Exposure

Prevention Tips for Aspergillosis

The best way to minimize your exposure to Aspergillus fungus is to avoid those places where you are more likely to encounter mold. Such places might include buildings that store grains, compost piles, and construction sites where you are more likely to find mold. You can also wear a face mask to avoid your exposure to the Aspergillosis fungus.

If you want to know more about aspergillosis and its treatment options, you can visit the Center for Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Call us today at 843-572-1600 or schedule an appointment today with our experts.

Aspergillosis Treatment