Rare and Unusual Follow-up Sequelae of Coronavirus Disease 2019: Splenic Mucormycosis in a Renal Transplant Recipient

Transplant Proc. 2022 Jul-Aug;54(6):1554-1556. doi: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2021.09.010. Epub 2021 Oct 2.

Abstract

Background: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is associated with adverse outcomes in transplantation communities. Mucormycosis, although a rare infection, has been classically linked to organ transplantation and is associated with exceptionally high morbidity and mortality rates. In this pandemic era, the double infection of mucormycosis and COVID-19 is a lethal combination but is rarely described in the literature on organ transplantation.

Case presentation: This article presents the case of a young kidney transplant recipient with diabetes who acquired severe COVID-19, followed by disseminated mucormycosis. The patient was a health care worker who developed severe COVID-19, for which he received remdesivir, anticoagulation, and dexamethasone. No immunomodulatory therapy was used. His maximum oxygen support was bilevel positive airway pressure ventilation. His sugar levels were frequently deranged during the stay. He developed secondary sepsis with Klebsiella, followed by nonhealing lung consolidation. He later developed pleural effusion and splenic abscess, which was detected incidentally. He underwent an emergency splenectomy, the culture of which yielded mucormycosis. Liposomal amphotericin B 5 mg/kg was administered. The patient deteriorated, and a repeat laparotomy yielded gastric perforation, with pus culture showing mucormycosis. The patient died after a long hospital stay.

Conclusions: The diagnosis and management of this dual infection during the pandemic is extremely challenging. In this case, the unusual location of mucormycosis complicating COVID-19 calls for a meticulous approach to opportunistic fungal infections in organ transplant recipients who are positive for COVID-19, especially in those patients with diabetes.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Anticoagulants
  • Antifungal Agents / therapeutic use
  • COVID-19*
  • Dexamethasone
  • Diabetes Mellitus* / etiology
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Kidney Transplantation* / adverse effects
  • Male
  • Mucormycosis* / etiology
  • Oxygen
  • Splenic Diseases* / diagnosis
  • Sugars

Substances

  • Anticoagulants
  • Antifungal Agents
  • Sugars
  • Dexamethasone
  • Oxygen