Background: Mucormycosis is a rare but life-threatening infection, caused by fungi of the Mucorales order, which can be found in soil, rotting leaves or on animals. Through characteristic angioinvasive growth, infections with mucor spores can occur as a pulmonary, rhinocerebral or cutaneous form. Infections mainly affect immunosuppressed patients with a history of uncontrolled diabetes or haematological malignancies, among others. Treatment is multimodal and requires an immediate combination of intravenous amphotericin B therapy and serial surgical debridements. Only a limited number of cases of cutaneous mucormycosis of the hand have been documented and described previously.
Case presentation: We report a cutaneous mucormycosis in an elderly patient with a therapy-resistant acute myeloid leukaemia after a minor trauma on his right hand, sustained whilst gardening. The fungal infection was treated with serial radical debridements, vacuum-assisted negative-pressure wound closure technique and intravenous antifungals. Despite successful eradication of the fungal infection, a palliative open wound care concept was implemented during the terminal course of the patient's leukaemia.
Conclusions: Cutaneous mucormycosis is a rare but fulminant fungal infection mostly affecting immunosuppressed patients. Survival is possible when diagnosed and treated early, yet mortality rates remain high.