Primary Central Nervous System Phaeohyphomycosis: A Review of 101 Cases

Sanjay G. Revankar, Deanna A. Sutton, Michael G. Rinaldi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

289 Scopus citations


Phaeohyphomycosis refers to infections caused by darkly pigmented fungi. These fungi rarely cause life-threatening disease. We reviewed 101 cases of culture-proven primary central nervous system phaeohyphomycosis reported in the English-language literature from 1966 to 2002. The most frequently isolated species was Cladophialophora bantiana. The next most frequent isolate was Ramichloridium mackenziei, seen exclusively in patients from the Middle East. More than one-half of the cases occurred in patients with no known underlying immunodeficiency. Mortality rates were high regardless of immune status. Therapy is not standardized, although the combination of amphotericin B, flucytosine, and itraconazole may improve survival rates. Newer azoles, such as voriconazole, also have a broad spectrum of activity against these fungi, although clinical experience is limited. Complete excision of brain lesions may provide better results than simple aspiration. An aggressive medical and surgical approach is warranted in treating these infections to optimize outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)206-216
Number of pages11
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 15 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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