Incubation Period and Early Natural History Events of the Acute Form of Paracoccidioidomycosis: Lessons from Patients with a Single Paracoccidioides spp. Exposure
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Several aspects of the natural history of paracoccidioidomycosis are still poorly understood. Different from the most prevalent, chronic form of the disease, the acute form represents a continuum from the initial respiratory infection to the full-blown disease, thus providing an opportunity to elucidate the pathogenesis of the early phase of this mycosis. We describe, for the first time, two patients with a single time point exposure to Paracoccidioides spp., for whom we were able to determine the time lapsed between exposure to the fungus Paracoccidioides spp. and the onset of signs and symptoms. In case 1, the pulmonary infection was unapparent, and the first manifestations of the acute/subacute form of the disease presented 4 months after Paracoccidioides spp. exposure. In case 2, self-limited, non-specific respiratory and systemic symptoms presented 45 days after infection. Thus, our patients confirm that, within a few weeks of infection, Paracoccidioides spp. affects the pulmonary lymphatic system and initially causes no or mild-to-moderate self-limited symptoms, eventually causing abnormalities on a chest X-ray, all of which spontaneously subside. These cases provide some insight into the natural history of this mycosis, the extent of the host exposure to the fungus, and the determination of its incubation period.
KeywordsParacoccidioidomycosis Pathogenesis Pulmonary involvement Natural history
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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest. The authors alone are responsible for the content and writing of the paper.
The patients provided written consent for the publication of this case report and accompanying photographs.
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