Laryngeal cryptococcosis: Literature review and guidelines for laser ablation of fungal lesions

Jack Y. Jeng, Courtney M. Tomblinson, Idris Tolgay Ocal, Holenarasipur R. Vikram, David G. Lott

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Objectives/Hypothesis: To describe the demographics, clinical manifestations, diagnosis, treatment, and outcomes of laryngeal cryptococcosis. Antifungal therapy guidelines are provided and the use of laser ablation is discussed. Data Sources: PubMed, OVID MEDLINE, and Embase databases and one patient who presented to our institution's otolaryngology department. Review Methods: A review of the English-language international medical literature was conducted using the terms (“larynx” or “laryngeal diseases”) and (“Cryptococcus” or “cryptococcosis”) to identify reported cases of laryngeal cryptococcosis. Databases were searched from inception through January 2015. Results: Eighteen cases were identified and reviewed, including the first reported case of potassium-titanyl-phosphate laser ablation. All patients presented with hoarseness, and two (11%) presented with acute airway obstruction that required tracheotomy. Six patients (33%) were immunocompromised, including three (17%) who had an underlying human immunodeficiency virus infection. Seven cases (39%) described an exophytic mass. Histopathology indicated pseudoepitheliomatous hyperplasia in seven of the 17 reported results (41%). Methenamine silver stain was used in 12 of the 15 described cases (80%) to identify the fungus. Lumbar puncture results were reported for seven patients, none of whom had meningitis. Antifungal therapy was used in 15 cases (83%), and two (11%) received additional laser ablation treatment. Eleven patients (61%) had complete resolution. Conclusions: Laryngeal cryptococcosis is a rare cause of persistent hoarseness. Most patients have complete resolution after treatment. For complex and obstructive cases, laser ablation coupled with antifungal therapy can successfully manage laryngeal cryptococcosis in select patients. Level of Evidence: NA Laryngoscope, 126:1625–1629, 2016.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1625-1629
Number of pages5
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016


  • Cryptococcosis
  • Cryptococcus
  • fluconazole
  • hoarseness
  • infection
  • larynx
  • laser therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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