Aspergillosis (fungal disease)
Fungal disease is most commonly seen in young to middle-aged (6.5 years old) cats, but can occur at any age. The fungal spores are widely found in the soil and are sniffed into the nose and airways. Most cats are able to remove the spores from their respiratory tract but in some cats this does not happen and the spores are able to develop into fungal plaques in the upper respiratory tract, lungs or elsewhere in the body.
A number of forms of fungal disease are seen in the cat. Infection may develop in the upper respiratory tract (sinonasal aspergillosis; SNA) only, or be more aggressive and extend into the area around the eye (sino-orbital aspergillosis; SOA). In some cats the fungal spores can spread throughout the entire body and cause disseminated disease (disseminated-invasive aspergillosis; DIA).