Phialemonium spp are an opportunistic fungal infection of dogs with immunocompromised states.
The dematiaceous or melanized fungi, once thought to possess low pathogenic potential, have become increasing causes of severe and disseminated infections in immunocompromised individuals. Phialemonium, considered to be a dematiaceous fungus by most authorities, although it lacks conspicuous dark pigmentation, was originally described as a genus intermediate between the Acremonium and Phialophora genera. They are normally considered a non-dermatophytic fungi in dogs that requires underlying dermatopathy to invade the skin. The incidence of these infections is greater in warm and humid climate.
Species which are pathogenic include:
- Phialemonium curvatum
- Phialemonium obovatum
Clinical signs of Phialemonium spp infections are often vague, but lameness due to bone infections, and respiratory symptoms are common due to pulmonary involvement.
Thick walled fungal hyphae are usually detected in impression smears from skin lesions. Staining with periodic acid-Schiff's stain is usually confirmatory.
Treatment with generalized phaeohyphomycosis usually requires aggressive treatment with amphotericin B, itraconazole, and ketoconazole, with curettage of the local area.
The prognosis for paecilomycosis is poor, although some treatment success has been reported.
- Black yeast.org
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