Otomycosis in Benghazi – A Prospective Study

Original article


B. Narasinga Rao 1, I. M. Kashbur 1, M. Subrahmanya Reddy 2, Samir Said Fahmy 2

1- Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, Al-Arab Medical University, Benghazi, Libya. 2-Otolaryngologist, 28th March Polyclinic, Benghazi, Libya.

Garyounis Medical Journal Vol.16, No.1-2. January/July 1993: 80-90


This is a study of 100 cases of otomycosis seen at the out-patient department of Otolaryngology of “28th March” Polyclinic, Benghazi. Culture of the specimens from 95 cases yielded either a single fungal agent (61.05%) or more than one fungal agent as mixed infection (38.95%). The overall incidence of otomycosis in Benghazi was found to be 5.67%. Majority of the cases were in the 3rd and 4th decades of life (36% and 27% respectively). Incidence being more common in males (54%), the right ear being more frequently involved (58%). Itching was the main presenting symptom and complaint (69% of cases). Candida species (54.87%) were the most common isolates and included C. albicans (37.81%) as the predominant species, whereas Aspergilus species (35.4%) formed the second dominant species with A. niger (24.18%) as the major isolate. Penicillium species, Mucor, and Rhizopus species were also isolated but in a small proportion of cases.
Among these cases, bacteria were isolated from 68 cases. The common organism being Staphylococcus aureus (29.32%) followed by Pseudomonas aeruginosa (18.1%) and Staph. epidermidis (12.08%). A hundred normal healthy controls were also studied for the presence of fungi and bacteria in their external auditory canals. In these, only 10 isolates of fungi were identified, which included 6 isolates of candida species, 3 isolates of Aspergillus niger and a single species of Penicillium. Bacteria were also isolated, and the predominant bacteria flora in this group were mostly nonpathogenic, in contrast to the potential pathogens isolated from cases of otomycosis. Their role in the causation of otomycosis is discussed. Our results are also compared with the results of other workers in different parts of the world.

Keywords: Otomycosis in Benghazi