Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!

Mycosis of the digestive system (gastrointestinal candidiasis) is a disease the symptoms of which most often appear in immunocompromised people - under antibiotic therapy, HIV-positive people, and cancer patients. If mycosis of the digestive system is suspected, tests should be performed to select the appropriate drugs and for the treatment to be effective.

Mycosis of the digestive systemotherwise also known ascandidiasis of the gastrointestinal tract , it is nothing else than oropharyngeal mycosis, esophageal mycosis, stomach fungus and intestines, and candidiasis of the skin around the anus. The lesions are usually located within the superficial layers of the epithelium and are accompanied by a chronic inflammatory process. Mycoses of the mouth and esophagus are the most common. Stomach and intestinal candidiasis is much less common .¹

Mycosis of the digestive system - causes

Mushrooms, which are predominantly yeasts, are found in 10 to 40 percent. people throughout the digestive tract, from the mouth to the rectum .¹ Under normal conditions, their number is not so large as to cause any disease symptoms. Only in some cases does the yeast (usually Candida albicans) multiply, thereby causing mycosis of the gastrointestinal tract.

Mushrooms are often multiplied by:

      • antibiotic therapy;
      • taking steroids and cytostatics;
      • decreased immunity;
      • chronic diseases - cancer, decompensated diabetes, viral and bacterial infectious diseases, lupus, esophageal obstruction, hypoparathyroidism, hematological diseases etc.);
      • hospitalization in intensive care units;
      • malnutrition;
      • diseases of subsequent sections of the digestive tract, e.g. diseases of the esophagus (e.g. achalasia) - in the case of esophageal mycosis.

It is also possible human-to-human transmission and infection with strains present in the hospital environment.

Mycosis of the digestive system - symptoms

Oropharyngeal thrush

The main symptom of the disease is reddening of the inside of the mouth with whitish plaques and pseudomembranes on the surface of the mucous membranes of the throat, tongue and gums. Tiles can be removed, under them is locatedpossibly slightly bleeding mucosa.

Oesophageal mycosis

Infection of the esophagus can occur through spread of infection from the oral cavity, although the esophagus can also be the primary site of candidiasis.

The main complaint is pain when swallowing (odynophagia), which in exceptional cases can be so severe that it is impossible to eat. The other symptoms are:

  • swallowing disorders (dysphagia), especially in relation to solid foods
  • retrosternal, paraspinal, percapular pain and back pain
  • gastrointestinal bleeding, usually in the upper section

Mycosis of the stomach

Candida species, despite their natural occurrence in the gastrointestinal tract, are rarely the cause of mycosis of the stomach or intestines. Ulcers are more common, superficial erosions, whitish plaques or pseudo-membranes are less frequent. The symptoms of mycosis of the stomach are similar to those of a stomach ulcer.

Intestinal mycosis

Intestinal mycosis most often manifests itself:

  • stomach pains
  • constipation and / or diarrhea
  • flatulence
  • flipping
  • muscle aches
  • feeling constantly tired

Anal candidiasis

Fungi of the genus Candida are a common cause of anal itching. In this location, infections are usually superficial and occur together with erythema and skin maceration. A complication of untreated anal skin mycosis is its spreading in the anal canal or on the skin of the perineum.

Worth knowing

Invasive mycosis of the gastrointestinal tract

When the fungal cells enter the blood vessels, we are dealing with invasive mycosis. The most common entry points for infection are the damaged mucosa of the gastrointestinal tract. Patients who have undergone abdominal surgery are particularly exposed to the invasive form of the disease. Other risk factors for invasive infections include cancer, severe burns, and acute pancreatitis.

Mycosis of the digestive system - diagnosis

What tests should be performed to diagnose mycosis of the digestive system? First of all, an endoscopic examination should be performed with the collection of samples from the affected areas. This will make the cells of the fungus visible.

In the case of mycosis of the mouth and esophagus, the presence of hyphae and pseudohyphae is enough in the examination of a brush swab taken from the diseased mucosa.

Laboratory tests finally confirm mycosis. For this purposethe following are performed: microscopic examination, cultivation to identify and determine the number of fungi in the tested material, and immunological tests.

Mycosis of the digestive system - treatment

In mild oropharyngeal infections, it is recommended to use topical preparations (nystatin, clotrimazole). Fluconazole is recommended for moderate to severe infections.

For oesophageal candidiasis, oral fluconazole is preferred, while gastric candidiasis is treated with topical or systemic use of nystatin, ketoconazole, fluconazole or itraconazole.

Mycosis of the digestive system - how to prevent it? Prophylaxis

Mycosis of the digestive system is prevented by a proper diet. Avoid:

  • sugars and products that contain it (chocolate, candies, jam, fruit juices), as simple sugars are an ideal breeding ground for mushrooms
  • wheat flour products: white bread, pancakes, dumplings, cakes
  • blue cheeses and fruit containing a lot of sugar (oranges, bananas, plums, dried fruit)

It is worth eating balanced meals that contain:

  • vegetables (carrots, celery, parsley, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, beans) and protein-rich foods (milk, cheese, white cheese, eggs, poultry, natural yoghurt).

It is also important to drink a minimum of 2 liters of water each day to help remove toxins from the body that are produced by the fungus.

Good to know: systemic mycosis destroys the body


See how you can catch ringworm

See the gallery of 7 photos

Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!