One common problem of chronic mold exposure is aspergillosis—a condition where a person inhales mold spores and enter the lungs. The illness mostly affects people with a weak immune system, and when undetected mold infection becomes severe, it can cause chronic symptoms and even deadly.
Mold in lungs requires intensive treatment and medication to completely rid of the spores.
The mild case of mold growing in lungs causes an allergic reaction, but a more serious case can cause invasive aspergillosis. Unfortunately, the invasion appears to have light symptoms at first before the spores spread and cause further health problems.
A. What Causes Mold in your lungs Infection?
As a form of fungi, the effects of mold in lungs can cause pneumonia in healthy people, and severe pneumonia in people with immune system disorder. The infection is proven to be rapidly fatal for patients recovering from chemotherapy or HIV-infected people who also have advanced disease.
Some of the causes of mold growing in lungs include invasive aspergillosis, pneumocystis fungus, and histoplasmosis mold.
1. Invasive Aspergillosis
When aspergillosis enters your lungs, it can cause an allergic reaction, lungs infection, respiratory disruption, or illness in other internal organs. In the U.S., the fungus is mostly found in the construction sites but it can grow both indoors and outdoors, and the severity varies greatly.
Patients with asthma or cystic fibrosis disorder are the most vulnerable to be exposed by aspergillosis, which symptoms may include fever, a cough that can bring up blood, and worsening asthma. The chronic case also shows the mold invades the lungs tissue of leukemia patients. When mistreated aspergillosis can cause aspergilloma, a chronic pulmonary condition.
This particular mold invasion is carried by fungus pneumocystis carinii that is responsible for most pneumocystis pneumonia (PCP) cases and easily affect even healthy people. However, people with a compromised immune system, are more susceptible to the disease.
The mold spores cause inflammation in the lungs and build up fluid, as well as affecting other body parts including lymph nodes, skin, and spleen. While the disease is considered life-threatening, medication has proven to slow down the rates.
The next susceptible cause of mold growing in lungs is histoplasmosis fungus, which contained in birds and bats excess. The mold spores can travel easily through the air and enter your lungs. When inhaling the spores, people may don’t get sick, some may experience fever, cough, and fatigue, but it greatly affects people with an impaired immune system.
An acute case of histoplasmosis infection can damage the lungs, in which causing the air sacs to be filled with fluids that disrupt air exchange as well as decreasing oxygen levels in your bloodstream.
This type of endemic fungus is the next suspect for mold in your lungs. The infection may spread to the lungs, skin, bones and joints, and human’s central nervous system. In the lungs, mold spores can cause extrapulmonary disease, particularly in immunocompromised patients.
The symptoms vary greatly from one to another, including dry cough, chest pain, dyspnea, fever and chills. In some cases, the disease can progress rapidly and causes an acute respiratory disease syndrome.
This particular type of fungus is known to be responsible for lung disease, also known as the “valley fever”. While the disease itself is not contagious, the mold spores can easily be inhaled from soil and transport to your lungs.
Research shows that the fungus is considered as the most infectious mold disease with the highest number of pulmonary illness. In 1 to 5 percent of the people with mold in lungs also has problems in the other organs like the skin, musculoskeletal system, and the central nervous system.
B. Types of Mold in lungs Diseases
Mildest health problem caused by mold growing in your lungs is breathing problem. When the mold enters your respiratory system, it can cause inflammation to the internal organ even swollen lungs that can block airways. This condition is a high prevalence for people with immune system disorder and trigger asthma, chest pain, persistent coughing, etc.
When mold in lungs treatment is not treated properly, it can cause asthma, a chronic lung illness that produces extra mucus in your airways. The swelling may block the air passage in your lungs, making it hard to breathe. Mold-related asthma is characterized by symptoms including chest pain and tightness, wheezing, and coughing.
The mold spores of pneumocystis can easily enter your lung and cause pneumonia, a lung inflammation that comes along with other illness like the flu. When someone catches pneumonia, it will be hard to breathe, trigger chest pain, headache, fever, chills, excessive sweating and loss of appetite. This disease mostly affects older people, but people with a compromised immune system or who’re undergoing chemotherapy drugs are also vulnerable.
The most severe case of mold in your lungs infection is a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Now, the illness won’t build up in one night, but it is highly linked to and particularly persistent in people with asthma or other allergies. When the spores enter the respiratory system, it will block the airways, and more thick mucus is produced.
C. Mold in lungs how to get it out?
1. Antifungal Medication
If you suspect any mold infestation in your lungs, the best way possible is to get them checked. The first and foremost mold in lungs treatment is using the antifungal medication to prevent invasive pulmonary aspergillosis from spreading to other organs.
This method works best in mild cases, including using prescribed medication like the amphotericin B, itraconazole, micafungin, and voriconazole will fight and eliminate the mold spores out of the lungs.
2. Anti-Asthma Medication
The next mold in lungs treatment to take is anti-asthma medication. The drugs, including corticosteroids, are considered powerful to help ease the airway, allowing you to breathe normally and open the airways. This drug also helps you to cough out the mold in the lungs.
Last but not least, the best way to eliminate mold growing in lungs once and for all is through surgery. This step should be taken when the symptoms and diagnosis show severe condition such as bleeding in your lungs. It is usually the worst scenario where one of the lungs may be at risk. The doctor will perform a surgical procedure to remove mold spores or the fungus balls.
Mold in lungs treatment is considered as the healing procedure to prevent further inflammation and irritation in your internal organs. Preventive-wise, it’s best to have your house checked one in a while and get a medical check-up when you suspect any of the symptoms of mold in the lungs.