We aimed to estimate the current burden of serious fungal infections in RoC.
Using local, regional, or global data and estimates of population and at-risk population groups, deterministic modelling was employed to estimate national incidence or prevalence of the most serious fungal infections.
Our study revealed that about 5.4% of the Congolese population (283,450) suffer from serious fungal infections yearly. The incidence of cryptococcal meningitis, Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia and disseminated histoplasmosis in AIDS patients was estimated at 560, 830 and 120 cases per year. Oral and oesophageal candidiasis collectively affects 12,320 HIV-infected patients. Chronic pulmonary aspergillosis, 67% post-tuberculosis, probably has a prevalence of 3,420. Fungal asthma (allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis and severe asthma with fungal sensitisation) probably has a prevalence of 3,640 and 4,800, although some overlap due to disease definition is likely. The estimated prevalence of recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis and tinea capitis is 85,440 and 178,400 respectively. Mostly related to agricultural activity, fungal keratitis affects an estimated 700 Congolese yearly.
These data underline the urgent need for an intensified awareness towards Congolese physicians to fungal infections and for increased efforts to improve diagnosis and management of fungal infections in the RoC.
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