Gastroduodenal Cryptococcus in an AIDS Patient Presenting With Melena

Yang Liu, Anish A. Patel, Janet C. Shaw, Eric P. Fillman, Paul B. Lamb


Gastrointestinal cryptococcosis is extremely rare with only a few case reports found in the literature and involvement primarily identified post-mortem. This is a case of 54-year-old man with a 20-year history of poorly controlled human immunodeficiency virus presented with constitutional symptoms along with melena. Diagnostic work up with esophagogastroduodenoscopy showed 4 irregular ulcers in the stomach notable for red-pigmented lesions within the ulcers, erythematous mucosa in the antrum and patchy friable mucosa in the duodenum. H&E staining and Mucicarmine staining showed findings consistent with C. neoformans. Blood culture and cerebrospinal fluid studies also revealed C. neoformans. Cryptococcus neoformans is an AIDS defining illness that most commonly presents as meningoencephalitis and pneumonitis. Key management principles includes: induction of antifungal therapy followed by consolidation and maintenance; management of elevated intracranial pressure and immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome. Although the organism can infect nearly all organs, gastrointestinal involvement is rarely described. Our case highlights the fact that gastrointestinal C. neoformans infection can be associated with upper gastrointestinal symptoms and may be the initial presentation of disseminated cryptococcosis.



Cryptococccus neoformans; Gastrointestinal Cryptococcosis; Stomach; Duodenum; Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome; HIV; Gastric ulcer

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Gastroenterology Research, bimonthly, ISSN 1918-2805 (print), 1918-2813 (online), published by Elmer Press Inc.                     
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