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We are a patient group with the most common types of Aspergillosis which is in the lungs – Pulmonary Aspergillosis. This causes severe breathing difficulties and fatigue. In some cases it causes large, frightening lung bleeds and permanent lung damage.
The term Aspergillosis covers a range of conditions. These are lifelong, fungal lung infections which are due to Aspergillus. These cause allergic reactions, making it difficult to breathe. They may cause lung damage (erosion of lung tissue) instead. This causes loss of lung function and difficulty breathing. Aspergillosis often affects people with asthma, especially those with severe asthma. It seems to make asthma worse.
Co-existing infections are an additional problem in Aspergillosis. This is especially where there is lung damage such as bronchiectasis (permanently widened airways) or cavities caused by Aspergillosis infection. Common microbes are Pseudomonas and Non-Tuberculous Mycobacteria.
Aspergillosis can also affect people with a weakened immune system, and in this form can rapidly kill. This might be due to cancer chemotherapy. It may also arise from immunosuppressive therapy used to stop organ rejection, in people who have received a transplant.
Other groups of people affected include those with a genetic (inherited) Primary Immunodeficiency Syndrome, or viral/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome such as HIV/AIDs. One of the main difficulties with awareness is that illness caused by Aspergillosis in people with these other illnesses often goes unrecorded.
Aspergillosis is a rare, debilitating and sometimes deadly infection. It can attack people of any age. Aspergillosis Trust also aims to raise funding for desperately needed research. For more details, please see the resources offered by the Aspergillus website.