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Fact sheet - Health conditions directory

Cryptococcosis is a disease caused by the yeast-like fungus, Cryptococcosis neoformans. The fungus is found frequently in the environment, particularly in pigeon droppings, nesting places and soil, especially if it is contaminated with pigeon faeces. It has also been associated with certain species of eucalyptus trees. Therefore, exposure to the fungus is common and it is believed that humans have a high natural resistance to infection. People who have disorders of immunity have less resistance and are more susceptible to developing the disease. Naturally acquired cryptococcosis occurs in humans and in animals although there is no evidence of transmission from animals to humans. Cryptococcal meningitis, if untreated, is fatal within weeks to months.

Last updated: 5 June 2023

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