Treating and Preventing Aspergillosis

How Aspergillosis Is Treated

In patients with milder forms of the disease who are experiencing fewer symptoms, the infection may not require treatment and eventually clear up on its own. A single fungal ball, for example, may persist unchanged for a long time without treatment. It is recommended that, in these cases, your doctor monitor you to ensure that the disease does not progress.

If treatment is required, your doctor’s recommendation will depend on the type that is diagnosed.

If you are diagnosed with allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis, an antifungal medication, such as itraconazole, is the most common course of action. If it is not effective, your doctor may suggest an oral corticosteroid as an alternative medication.

For chronic pulmonary aspergillosis patients who develop a fungal ball, surgery is the best option if the mass is in a good location to be removed. Though sometimes prescribed, antifungal medications have been found to have little effect.

In the most severe cases, a combination of antifungal medication and surgery may be necessary. Other medications that are suppressing the immune system may also need to be discontinued during treatment. Your doctor will help you determine the correct treatment for you.

Preventing Aspergillosis

Though it can be difficult to avoid exposure to Aspergillus, if you have severe lung disease or a weakened immune system, you should take special precautions, such as minimizing your exposure to soil and dust. If you are at high risk, your doctor may suggest taking antifungal drugs as a preventive measure.

Visit our mold and dampness page for more information about how to handle mold infestation safely.

Finding Support

If you have questions about your diagnosis or what to expect, you can call the Lung Association's Lung HelpLine at 1-800-LUNGUSA to talk to a trained respiratory professional who can help answer your questions and connect you with support.

Reviewed and approved by the American Lung Association Scientific and Medical Editorial Review Panel.

Page last updated: March 24, 2020

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