The fungus Aspergillus causes aspergillosis. There are approximately 180 species of Aspergillus, but scientists have found only about 34 of them cause harm to humans and, in some cases, animals. The most prevalent harmful types are A. fumigatus and A. flavus. Aspergillus exists in soil, plants and decaying plant matter, dust, building materials, food, and water, which makes contact with the fungus very common.
There are five main types of aspergillosis, and each can be placed into one of three categories: non-invasive, invasive, and chronic. Non-invasive aspergillosis includes allergic bronchopulminary aspergillosis, allergic aspergillosis sinusitis, and aspergilloma. These usually do not spread. Invasive aspergillosis includes the self-named type and cutaneous aspergillosis; doctors treat these varieties as serious infections. Chronic aspergillosis is a long-term fungal infection.
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