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Video: Dangerous fungal infection targets weakened immune systems

August 26, 2019


S.>>Ursula: A 19-YEAR-O SOPHOMORE AT U.T. AUSTIN, DANIEL IS A SURVIVO HE BEAT CHILDHOOD LEUKEMIA AND A FUNGAL INFECTION THAT AFFLICTS PEOPLE WITH WEAKENED IMMUNE SYSTEMS. JESSIE DEGOLLADO REPORTS THE SPECIALIST WHO TREATED HIM AS A CHILD HAS HELPED TO DRAW UP NEW GUIDELINES THAT HELP OTHERS JUST LIKE HIM.>>I’M BREATHING IT IN, YOU’RE BREATHING IT IN RIGHT NOW.>>Reporter: A TYPE OF FUNGUS IN THE AIR.>>IT’S SOMETHING WE BREATHE IN ALL THE TIME. IF OUR IMMUNE SYSTEM IS GOOD WE DON’T HAVE A COMPLICATION.>>Reporter: BUT AT AGE 7, DANIEL’S IMMUNE SYSTEM WAS SHOT. HE WAS GETTING CHEMO FOR THE LEUKEMIA THROUGHOUT HIS LUNGS, WHICH IS WHERE DOCTORS FOUND THE POTENTIALLY DEADLY FUNGUS HE HAD DEVELOPED.>>TOLD US THAT IT HAD WALLED ITSE OFF AND THAT IT WOULD NOT GO AWAY, NEEDED TO HAVE SURGERY.>>Reporter: PART OF HIS LOWER RIGHT LUNG HAD TO BE REMOVED.>>IT WAS PROBABLY ONE OF THE MORE THREATENING THINGS DURING MY TREATMENT.>>THIS IS PROBABLY THE ORGANISM THAT DANIEL HAD.>>Reporter: ENDANGERING ONLY PEOPLE AT THEIR WEAKEST WITH CANCER, HIV, AIDS, EVEN ORGAN TRANSPLANTS. IT INVADES BLOOD VESSELS AND ONCE IN THE LUNGS THE CHEST HURTS.>>MAKES YOU SHORT OF BREATH. OFTEN YOU’LL COUGH UP BLOOD.>>Reporter: PATTERSON HELPED DEVELOP NEW GUIDELINES TO PREVENT, TREAT, AND CURE THE DISEASE. THIS IS THE LAB WHE DR. PATTERSON HELPED DEVELOP SOME OF THE NEW MEDICATION AND ARE PART OF THE NEW GUIDELINES.>>WE CALL THEM ANTI-FUNGALS.>>HE WAS TAKING AN IV THAT DR. PATTERSON PRESCRIBED AND THEN HE HAD THE SURGERY ON HIS LUNGS AND HE RECOVERED REALLY WELL AFTER THAT.>>IT’S REALLY GREAT KNOWING THERE ARE PEOPLE DOING THAT KIND OF WORK.>>Ursula: NOW IN HEALTHY PEOPLE THE LUNG’S DEFENSE SYSTEM CAN ERADICATE THAT FUNGUS BUT IN OTHERS IT CAN AFFECT DIFFERENT PARTS OF THE BODY. THAT’S WHY NEW GUIDELINES

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