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Home / Health / Family of Chicago women who have died hopes that officials will remove the secrecy of the fungus Candida auris

Family of Chicago women who have died hopes that officials will remove the secrecy of the fungus Candida auris



Stephanie Spoor lived with lupus for three decades. After suffering from heart failure and recently becoming infected with a deadly fungus, she survived less than two months.

Spoor of Crystal Lake died in February at the age of 64, when he was waiting for a lung transplant. She was infected with Candida auris (19459005), state health officials and medical records were confirmed so she could not qualify for a transplant. The disease has quickly surfaced in the Chicago area and elsewhere in the nation, infecting ill people in nursing homes and hospitals with invasive medical procedures.

Spoor's family members are still trying to overcome the shock of their death. They are confident that she received excellent medical care at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago. However, they are worried that they could not be cured of the infection because they were resistant to traditional antifungal medicines. And they want the state to disclose in which institutions cases of illness occur, so that patients can take protective measures against them.

"They could do absolutely nothing if they got their way," said Stephanie Spoor's husband, Greg. "They tried many things in different dosages. This was not an issue that everyone took lightly.

Officials demand caution in the face of the outbreak of fatal fungi in the Chicago area. You should know the following about Candida auris. »

At the last census in February, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 61

7 people were infected nationwide. Of these, 158 were in Illinois, the vast majority in Chicago and the surrounding area. The fungus is often resistant to drug treatment. More than one in three patients dies within a month of infection, the CDC said.

Spoor was the mother of four sons and a grandmother who had been retired for about 30 years in the Bundestag pre-school program. Prior to their sudden downturn, Spoor was relatively healthy and walked several miles each day, despite lupus, an autoimmune disease in which the body's defenses attack one's own tissues.

Last fall, Spoor got severe sinusitis. I could not shake myself, and she was admitted to the emergency room at the Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington in November before she was dispatched to the northwest in December, one of her sons, Nicholas said ,

There, the doctors performed a biopsy on their lungs According to Nicholas Spoor, she suffered three cardiac arrest due to complications and had to be made to live. She had a tracheostomy tube in her throat and was connected by tubing to an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machine or ECMO to pump and oxygenate her blood.

The doctors initially said that the strain on the mushroom in the hospital was susceptible to medication, but it proved resistant to antifungals.

Medical records from which the family shared showed that Spoor had Candida auris . One notation called for "conscientious" precautions to prevent its spread, and boldly emphasized that it was a "highly transmissible fungus that developed resistance."

Stephanie Spoor was hoping to marry her son Zack this June. When it turned out she would not make it, the family decided that the chaplain should have the wedding ceremony at her bedside. She could watch the ceremony, which Nicholas said was a comfort only days before her death.

As her condition worsened and there was no hope of recovery, the doctors and her family decided to take her out of life to gain her last few hours were more pleasant, which she accepted, Nicholas said.

"She took it better than us," he said. "She said she was tired. She was annoyed that she had missed our lives, but she seemed to accept it.

On February 11, Stephanie Spoor was killed and died soon afterwards. With the family's permission, officials from the US Department of Health confirmed that they had Candida auris .

identified. C. auris is critical in knowing what steps to take to control them in healthcare, the CDC said. The fungus can settle in patients for many months, persist in the environment and keeps many routinely used disinfectants in healthcare facilities.

Nicholas Spoor called the loss of his mother "devastating". But he hoped that lessons learned and cured could prevent the disease.

"Hopefully, over time, no one else will have to go through what my mother and our family went through to find a cure," he said.

He hopes that Illinois will lift its ban on disclosing the names of facilities that have infections. US Department of State officials state that the information is withheld so as not to disclose the identity of infected persons in these facilities – although such disclosure would not identify any individuals.

The death certificate of Stephanie Spoor cites her cause of death as a lung disease and respiratory arrest and does not mention Candida auris . Officials say it is sometimes difficult to determine if a patient has died of the infection or an earlier condition. Northwest officials did not comment on the case.

"Secrecy is not a way to treat a disease," said Nicholas Spoor. "They would think our nation's treatment of the AIDS epidemic would have taught us that."

Stephanie Spoor's husband, Greg, works for a public bathroom plumbing company. Despite the emphasis on the need to wash their hands after using the toilet, many people fail to do so.

He wondered how the beetle traveled from the other side of the world, starting in Asia in 2009 and entering Illinois in Illinois in 2016. He hopes that further steps can be taken to find out where the fungus is located , and to keep him away from patients.

"I've lost my wife, that hurts more than anything else," he said. "It's not about correcting the guilt. It's more about being more preventive than reactive.

rmccoppin@chicagotribune.com

Twitter @RobertMcCoppin


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