Can a Yeast Infection Be Life Threatening?
Candidiasis: Yeast Infection
Typically, yeast infections are not life threatening. However, a lack of proper and prompt treatment can lead to the development of certain complications that can be life threatening. Several types of yeast infections exist, and they all consist of different signs, symptoms, and developmental patterns. Yeast infection severity is dependent upon many individual factors, the most important being the strength and health of the immune system.
Yeast Infection Symptoms
The symptoms of yeast infections are dependent upon the type. Symptoms also vary based on the individual and some individuals may have no apparent signs or symptoms.
Vaginal yeast infections are commonly associated with irritation, itching, and burning of the vagina, vaginal redness and rashes, pain during sexual intercourse, urinary pain (burning sensation), and the presence of a cottage cheese like thick and white vaginal discharge.
Oral thrush yeast infections are also associated with certain symptoms. Commonly, small cream colored, white, or yellow spots are present. Typically the spots are located to the tongue and back of the mouth. The spots are commonly painless; however, if these spots are scraped off, bleeding is typical. Thrush is also associated with an uncomfortable sensation of burning of the throat and mouth.
Yeast infections of the male penis are commonly associated with symptoms such as a redness or rash. Sometimes these symptoms are accompanied by painful (burning) sensation during urination.
Yeast Infection Complications
Yeast infections can be cause for specific complications that can be life threatening. The presence of certain symptoms including nausea/vomiting, vaginal discharge accompanied with abdominal pain, fever, and chills should be reported to a physician. These symptoms are common with certain conditions such as pelvic inflammatory disease, kidney infections, and appendicitis and require prompt hospital treatments.
Oral thrush can have specific complications. If the thrush interferes with drinking or eating for extended periods of time, hospitalization may be necessary for other treatments and to re-establish fluid levels within the body.
It isn't common for Candida skin infections to require hospitalization; however, recurring cases should be reported to a physician. The most aggressive and life threatening form of a Candidiasis infection is that of systemic Candidiasis.
It is possible for yeast infections (Candidiasis) to become a systemic condition upon entering the bloodstream. This is most commonly associated with the presence of a compromised/weakened immune system. Systemic Candidiasis is caused by infection of the Candida fungus growth within internal organs or the bloodstream. Systemic Candidiasis, without prompt investigation and treatment, can be life threatening.
Yeast Infections: Life Threatening?
Individuals with weakened/compromised immune systems must take all Candida yeast infections seriously. The presence of a yeast infection may also be a sign of further decreases in immune system function. Candida yeast infections are not typically life threatening. However, ignorance of the problem and not seeking treatment can lead to the progression of the infection to systemic levels, which can be life threatening. This is common in individuals with immune system deficiencies, but not for the typically healthy individual.
Sources: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/yeastinfections.html http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/candidiasis-yeast-infection http://www3.niaid.nih.gov/healthscience/healthtopics/vaginalYeastInfection/overview.htm