What Are The Symptoms of Valley Fever?

Valley fever is also known as coccidioidomycosis and it is caused by fungi, named C. posadasii and Coccidioides immitis species. This particular species is in the body of around 50%-75% of healthy people that causes zero to negligible symptoms and some people infected with these fungi never require medical care.

Valley FeverWhen signs and symptoms start getting worse, the affected people can develop lung issues, including the breathing shortness, cough, fever, chest pains, and production of sputum and it can eventually result in acute or progressive lung disorder and it might even result in disseminated lining tissue of the meninges, skeleton, skin along with other body parts. We already know that valley fever can also attack different kinds of animals, including cattle, dogs, monkeys, and otters.

Most of the microbiologists, as well as the physicians of infectious disease, prefer the term ‘coccidioidomycosis’ instead of valley fever, as this term describes it as a particular fungal disease and it can completely replace the term valley fever in the upcoming days. However, valley fever is also known as various names, including San Joaquin Valley fever, acute valley fever, desert fever, and California valley fever. Don’t get confused between valley fever and African or rift valley fever (developed by a virus).

Symptoms of Valley Fever

Around 30%-35% of individuals develop flu-like symptoms, including a cough, fever, chills, and malaise that can get resolved more than two to six weeks without getting treated. Some people might develop additional signs and symptoms, including the breathing shortness, headaches, night sweats, muscle and joint pains, and sputum production. The symptoms of valley fever resemble pneumonia.

Women might develop erythema nodosum (tender, painful, and reddish lumps specifically on the legs) or erythema multiforme (a type of allergic reaction resembles erythema nodosum, developed various body parts, accompanied rash) more than men.

The amalgamation of fever, erythema nodosum, as well as migratory joint pains, is many times termed as “desert rheumatism.” These symptoms generally get resolved in around two to six weeks.

Chronic coccidioidomycosis develops in around 8% of patients and it is also characterized by the aforementioned signs and symptoms, however, developments towards the volume loss of lungs, scarring or fibrosis and inflammation are regarded as acute complications associated with valley fever.

Disseminated coccidioidomycosis (around 1% of scenarios) can be termed by the aforementioned signs and symptoms, however, these symptoms might be developed more than weeks to years. The fungi might be discovered in any of the organ systems but they are basically seen in the bones, meninges, and skin. In some people, valley fever becomes fatal. The disseminated disease develops most prominently in immunosuppressed people, pregnant ladies, and males.

Other mammals, such as dogs can also get infected. Around 28% of dogs up to the 2 years of age might get affected by valley fever and around 6% of these dogs show the symptoms like the breathing shortness, cough, alleviated appetite, and listlessness. The issue of valley fever might get progressed and so it’s very important to consult a doctor as soon as possible.

How Do You Treat Valley Fever ?

Most of us are aware of the term ‘fever’ and many of us are familiar with the term ‘flu’ but do you know how many types of fever are there? In the regions of the southwestern United States and some other areas in the world, a rare chance is that such signs indicate a type of fever and it is valley fever.

Valley FeverIf you are not familiar with this term, then you will have some relief that valley fever isn’t contagious in nature. The ground fungus causes this particular health problem. The fungus spores’ transmit through the air and people unknowingly breathe that contaminated air.

Most of the individuals don’t get sick and whenever valley fever starts showing symptoms, these symptoms generally go away automatically otherwise medicines are given to clear these symptoms. However, in rare scenarios, the fungus starts spreading various other parts of the body and that can convert situations more critical and therefore it’s very important to know about this matter before it affects you. Another worth noting point in this regard id your adorable pets can also get affected with valley fever and nowadays natural treatment for valley fever in dogs are also available.

Healthcare providers use the medical term ‘coccidioidomycosis’ for valley fever. This fever is also called ‘desert rheumatism’ or ‘San Joaquin Valley fever’.

Diagnosis of Valley Fever

The diagnosis of valley fever is not very easy relying only on its signs as well as symptoms, as its signs are generally vague and might get overlapped with symptoms that develop in other health issues as well. You will be astonished to know that a chest X-ray even fails to distinguish between valley fever and other lung disorders.

A proper diagnosis of valley fever is dependent on the traces of coccidioides organisms in blood, tissue or some other body secretions and that’s why your doctor might recommend you to undergo one or more tests specified below.

  • Sputum smear or culture: The particular test takes the sample of a matter that is released in times of coughing or sputum in the presence of coccidioides organisms.
  • Blood Tests: Your doctor can check your body’s antibodies against the fungus that is responsible for valley fever via a blood test.

Treatment for Valley Fever

  • Rest: It’s true that most of the individuals, suffering from serious valley fever, don’t need any sort of treatment. Even whenever symptoms are acute, the best treatment for transferring into a healthy life is bed rest as well as fluids. However, consultation with a doctor is very important. The valley fever natural treatment is also popular in people.

  • Anti-fungal Medications: If signs and symptoms don’t get better or get worse with the passing time, then an enhanced risk of further complications might develop and in this state, your doctor might prescribe an anti-fungal medication. Such types of medications are also utilized with the acute or disseminated health issue. You can also consult your doctor about valley fever medications.

More acute infection might be treated primarily with an intravenous antifungal medication, including amphotericin B.