Cryptococcal MeningitisJAMA A life-threatening infection of the membranes (meninges) that cover the brain and the spinal cord.
Cryptococcal disease is caused by a fungus (Cryptococcus neoformans). Most people have been exposed to
this organism, which is found in soil contaminated by bird droppings, but it usually does not cause disease
in healthy people. The majority of people with cryptococcal meningitis have immune systems that are
damaged by a disease such as AIDS or suppressed by drugs. The organism can infect almost all organs of
the body, although it most commonly causes disease of the meninges, skin, or lungs.
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