Candida spp. are common commensal organisms in the skin and gut microbiota, and disruptions in the cutaneous and gastrointestinal barriers (for example, owing to gastrointestinal perforation) promote invasive disease.
Major pathogenic species:
At least 15 distinct Candida spp. can cause human disease, but the majority of invasive infections are caused by 5 pathogens:
Candida spp. are commensal yeasts that are part of the normal human skin and gut microbiota, and they are detectable in up to 60% of healthy individuals; thus, invasive disease is usually a consequence of increased or abnormal colonization together with a local or generalized defect in host defences.
Prolonged intensive care stay
Broad-spectrum antibiotic therapy
Very low birthweight (VLBW)
Total parenteral nutrition
Central venous catheters
The spectrum of disease of invasive candidiasis ranges from minimally symptomatic candidaemia to fulminant sepsis with an associated mortality exceeding 70%.
Thrush, vaginitis, paronychia, etc
Bloodstream infections with Candida spp. (that is, candidaemia) and deep-seated infection
Candidaemia (candidal sepsis)
GOLD STANDARD for diagnosis of invasive candidiasis that enables species identification and susceptibility testing.
Mannan antigen and antimannan antibody.
β-D-glucan: Pan-fungal marker of invasive fungal infection
C. albicans germ tube antigen (CAGTA) test: Candida spp.-specific antibody test
It is important to differentiate colonization from true infection to avoid overtreatment