Among the nearly 200 Candida spp., only a handful are important human pathogens. Candida albicans is the most commonly encountered human pathogen, while C. glabrata, C. tropicalis, C. parapsilosis complex, and C. krusei are other important pathogens.
C. albicans causes thrush, vulvovaginitis, and esophagitis. These diseases occur in patients in whom there has been a disruption of the bacterial microbiota or in patients with an immunocompromising condition. Cutaneous infections and onychomycosis may also be caused by Candida. Candida spp. are also important causes of intravascular access line-related fungemia, fungal endocarditis, and dissemination from the bloodstream to distant sites.
Images courtedy of the CDC.