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Estimation of the Burden of Serious Human Fungal Infections in Malaysia

Department of Medical Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603, Malaysia
Centre of Excellence for Research in AIDS (CERiA), Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603, Malaysia
Department of Microbiology, School of Basic & Applied Sciences, Central University of Tamil Nadu (CUTN), Thiruvarur 610 101, Tamil Nadu, India
Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, The University of Manchester and Manchester Academic Health Science Centre, Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9PL, UK
The National Aspergillosis Centre, Education and Research Centre, Wythenshawe Hospital, Manchester M23 9LT, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
J. Fungi 2018, 4(1), 38;
Received: 11 December 2017 / Revised: 7 February 2018 / Accepted: 14 February 2018 / Published: 19 March 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fungal Burden in Different Countries)
PDF [265 KB, uploaded 3 May 2018]


Fungal infections (mycoses) are likely to occur more frequently as ever-increasingly sophisticated healthcare systems create greater risk factors. There is a paucity of systematic data on the incidence and prevalence of human fungal infections in Malaysia. We conducted a comprehensive study to estimate the burden of serious fungal infections in Malaysia. Our study showed that recurrent vaginal candidiasis (>4 episodes/year) was the most common of all cases with a diagnosis of candidiasis (n = 501,138). Oesophageal candidiasis (n = 5850) was most predominant among individuals with HIV infection. Candidemia incidence (n = 1533) was estimated in hospitalized individuals, some receiving treatment for cancer (n = 1073), and was detected also in individuals admitted to intensive care units (ICU) (n = 460). In adults with asthma, allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) was the second most common respiratory mycoses noticed (n = 30,062) along with severe asthma with fungal sensitization (n = 39,628). Invasive aspergillosis was estimated in 184 cases undergoing anti-cancer treatment and 834 ICU cases. Cryptococcal meningitis was diagnosed in 700 subjects with HIV/AIDS and Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonitis (PCP) in 1286 subjects with underlying HIV disease. The present study indicates that at least 590,214 of the Malaysian population (1.93%) is affected by a serious fungal infection annually. This problem is serious enough to warrant the further epidemiological studies to estimate the burden of human fungal infections in Malaysia. View Full-Text
Keywords: AIDS; aspergillosis; cryptococcal meningitis; epidemiology; HIV infection; Malaysia AIDS; aspergillosis; cryptococcal meningitis; epidemiology; HIV infection; Malaysia
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Velayuthan, R.D.; Samudi, C.; Lakhbeer Singh, H.K.; Ng, K.P.; Shankar, E.M.; Denning, D.W. Estimation of the Burden of Serious Human Fungal Infections in Malaysia. J. Fungi 2018, 4, 38.

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