Assessment of Airborne Fungi in Childrens Hospital Located in Kolkata India
Fungal spores contribute significant concentration in the bioaerosol of various environmental conditions which may have potential health threats. Our study was aimed at determining the presence of disseminating airborne fungi in a pediatric government hospital in Kolkata. The study was started from the post-monsoon to the middle winter (August to December 2008) in the indoor and outdoor environment of the hospital with temperature and humidity ranges of 11.2 °C-35.2 °C and 70 per cent-90 per cent, respectively. Air sampling was performed at 14 days intervals during the daytime following the gravitation settling method, and the fungal colonies were identified based on micro and macro morphological characteristics. The percentage contribution of individual fungal species from the outdoor section and indoor units (Newborn Baby Ward, Respiratory Care Unit, Step Down Ward, Thalassemia Care Unit) of the hospital environment was calculated. We observed profound aeromycofloral diversity where the outdoor environment was mostly colonised by sterile hyphae (16.43 %) along with the allergenic Aspergillus fumigatus (13.6 %) and Penicillium sp. (12.32 %). Conversely, an abundance of Cladosporium herbarum (24.7 %) and Penicillium sp. (17.85 %) followed by Aspergillus sp. (12.9 %) and sterile hyphae (14.51 %) were found in different indoor units. Our results showed the diversity of airborne mycoflora which promotes the trend to health difficulties and thus the hospital environment monitoring along with proper control measures is essential.
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