Man catches dangerous fungal infection that killed his dog

September 26, 2019  10:45

Scott Donahue, 49, from Park Rapids, Minnesota, USA, suffered a serious illness caused by the same fungal infection that killed his dog a year ago, Fox News reported.

In March, Scott began to cough violently, which later turned into vomiting. Suspecting his pneumonia, the doctors prescribed him antibiotics. However, they did not help, and the man's condition continued to deteriorate. On the fifth day of illness, one of his sons called an ambulance.

At the hospital, Scott was diagnosed with blastomycosis, a fungal disease that is accompanied by fever, coughing, muscle pain, weight loss, chest pain and fatigue. The causative agent of this disease is common in North America.

His dog died from blastomycosis last year.

For three months, Scott received treatment in a hospital. He was given a tracheotomy, fed through a gastrostomy tube and connected three times to a ventilator.

“They told my kids the second time I was on a ventilator they should get my family together because I probably wasn’t going to make it,” Donahue, a Type 2 diabetic, told the news outlet. “It’s a really serious thing and I’m lucky to be here.”

After discharge, he will have to take an antifungal agent for a year.

“I literally was in the same position in my hospital bed for almost three months,” he told Duluth News Tribune. “My back still hurts. I lost 40 pounds. I used to weigh 175 and have pretty good size arm muscles. I use a walker and a cane, look like a twig and have almost no muscle tone. I turned 50 in the hospital.”

Follow Medicine on Facebook and Twitter


  • Video
  • Event calendar
  • Archive