Respiratory failure due to blastomycosis infection in a patient with hypertension, cirrhosis and chronic pancreatitis

Mohammad Alhaji, Ruxana T. Sadikot

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Blastomycosis is an endemic fungal infection in North America. It usually causes acute and occasionally chronic pneumonias with disseminated infection, particularly skin lesion, as an extrapulmonary manifestation. Many cases are asymptomatic; however, a few patients progress to develop severe pulmonary infection leading to acute respiratory distress syndrome, which carries a high mortality rate. Disseminated blastomycosis involving the heart is exceptionally rare and can be potentially life threatening. To our knowledge, there are only four reported cases of cardiac blastomycosis in the literature. Here, we report a case of cardiac blastomycosis who initially presented with respiratory failure. In our patient, it was practically impossible to establish a diagnosis of cardiac blastomycosis antemortem because of his previous cardiac history related to alcoholic cardiomyopathy, which confounded the cardiac findings. This case raises an important issue of clinically considering involvement of the heart in cases of disseminated blastomycosis. Perhaps if the patient did not have a prior cardiac history, a new onset heart failure may have suggested cardiac involvement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)583-585
Number of pages3
JournalExpert Review of Respiratory Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Disseminated blastomycosis
  • Fungal infection
  • Heart failure
  • Respiratory failure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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