This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Mycetoma is a chronic infection that is caused by fungi or actinomycetes (bacteria that produce filaments, like fungi). The first symptom of the condition is generally painless swelling beneath the skin, which progresses to a nodule (lump) over several years. Eventually, affected people experience massive swelling and hardening of the affected area; skin rupture; and formation of sinus tracts (holes) that discharge pus and grains filled with organisms. Some affected people have no discomfort while others report itching and/or pain. Mycetoma is rare in the United States, but is commonly diagnosed in Africa, Mexico and India. In these countries, it occurs most frequently in farmers, shepherds, and people living in rural areas. Frequent exposure to penetrating wounds by thorns or splinters is a risk factor. Treatment varies based on the cause of the condition and may include antibiotics or antifungal medications.
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