Infectious Diseases

What are Cryptococcosis and Moniliasis

Omar Salvador's image for:
"What are Cryptococcosis and Moniliasis"
Image by: 

There are at least nine different diseases that are classified as systemic mycoses. While many of these are airborne infections, some are not. Mainly caused by fungi, systemic mycoses are often serious or fatal. The diseases cryptococcosis and moniliasis are two examples of systemic mycoses. Both are infectious diseases; moniliasis is also known as a disease of the skin. Both cryptococcosis and moniliasis are caused by fungi.

Also known by the name torulosis, cryptococcosis is caused by the fungus Cryptococcus neoformans. This fungus is a yeastlike, capsule-producing organism that reproduces by budding. No spores or hyphae are formed. It grows well on ordinary culture media. On the other hand, moniliasis (also called candidiasis) is caused by the fungus Candida albicans, also a yeastlike cell with pseudohyphae (not true septate hyphae). It produces large, thick-walled, spherical chlamydrospores. Pasty, smooth colonies, having a yeasty odor, develop on ordinary culture media.

Adults between the ages forty and sixty, males twice as frequently as females, are those most frequently affected by cryptococcosis. The most serious cases of this infectious disease affect the central nervous system and its coverings. Such cases may cause death, as in fact the mortality rate in these instances is very high. Usually, though, cryptococcosis starts in the lungs and spreads through the bloodstream. In studies made, the fungus has been found in pigeon excreta, but the birds themselves are apparently not ill. Also, this infectious disease is not contagious, apparently not being transmittable directly from animals to humans or from person to person.

The skin disease moniliasis most commonly affects people who sweat freely, those who have diabetes, and obese people. The fungus that causes this skin disease is actually the same organism that causes thrush in the mouths of babies. It may affect the mucous membranes of the digestive tract or the vagina in debilitated people. Those who have been taking antibiotics orally for a long time are also susceptible to this skin disease.

In moniliasis, the skin areas most commonly involved are those around the corners of the mouth, fingernail folds and other body folds, vagina, or anus. The affected areas are red and raw; they may have whitish, curdlike deposits on their surfaces.  Those who have this skin disease may experience mild burning or itching on the affected areas; their condition is made worse by moisture and warmth.

Treatments for these two systemic mycoses are different. For cryptococcosis, the use of certain antibiotics has greatly improved the prospects of recovery. Of course, a physician must supervise the use of these antibiotics. In some cases of this infectious disease, surgical removal of the lesions may be advisable.

For moniliasis, the affected skin areas should be kept cool and dry as possible. If the moniliasis sufferer has been taking antibiotics orally, these medications should be stopped. If the affected person is obese, continue a weight-reducing program until a normal weight is attained. If the afflicted person is a diabetic, a physician should treat the case (diabetes) immediately. There are two fungicidal preparations that are usually effective in treating moniliasis. These are Nystaform ointment and Mycostatin cream.


1. "Cryptococcosis", on Doctor Fungus (online) -

2. "Moniliasis", on Wrong Diagnosis (online) -

3. "Systemic Mycoses: An Overview for Natural Health Professionals" by R. Thiel, Ph.D., N.H.D. -

More about this author: Omar Salvador

From Around the Web