A Michigan chef has died after contracting a deadly fungal infection that affects his lungs, the Daily Mail reported Wednesday.
Ian Pritchard, a 29-year-old chef from Petoskey, Michigan, died of a fungal infection after a long battle with life. according to to the Daily Mail. Pritchard, who is known for his cooking skills at local restaurants, began to feel ill after experiencing his first flu-like symptoms in November, and was hospitalized and eventually admitted to a specialized facility in Detroit for intensive care. It is reported that he was transferred to
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According to the Daily Mail, doctors diagnosed him with a rare and aggressive fungal infection called Blastococcosis. Pritchard's lungs took the brunt of the disease. According to his family, the fungus “perforated his lung.”
Pritchard's father, Ron, likened the damage to “Swiss cheese” to emphasize the seriousness of the infection that left his son in critical condition, the Daily Mail reported. The causative fungus, Blastomyces, thrives in moist environments such as soil and decaying wood. According to the Daily Mail, Pritchard was prevalent in the Midwest, where he enjoyed outdoor activities.
Despite the efforts of medical professionals and the administration of antifungal treatments such as itraconazole and amphotericin B, the infection became resistant and hopes for a possible lung transplant were dashed. Pritchard's family said he chose to be taken off life support, the newspaper reported. (Related: Tennessee teen battles rare bacterial infection, forcing doctors to amputate both legs)
The increase in blastomycosis infections in the United States, particularly in the Midwest, is alarming. The Daily Mail said inconsistent reporting across states has obscured the true impact of the disease. The rarity of this infection and its serious consequences highlight the urgent need for awareness and research to effectively combat this fungal threat.