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Fear grows after more cases of valley fever are reported in California

Coccidioidomycosis better known as valley fever is an illness that has been reported in many states in the US.
But it's especially dangerous right here in the Central Valley.


According to the Fresno County Department of Public Health.
In 2017 there were 788 cases reported of valley fever in the central valley, a thirty percent increase from 2016.


"The symptoms are fever, headache, muscle aches, joint pains and a rash on your upper body," said Joe Prado with Fresno County Department of Public Health.


Although the majority of the cases have been reported west of Fresno County.
Medical experts said those who work outdoors should take precautions, such as a surgical mask to keep the fungus out of your system.
Especially if your work involves displacing soil.

"If you are doing construction work or if you are disrupting the soil you are releasing the fungus into the air and when it is released you can be exposed to valley fever," said Prado. 


But humans are not the only ones who can get sick.
Mans best friend can also become ill.


Veterinarian Cheryl Waterhouse said that is because dogs tend to roll around on the ground and that is where the fungus hides.

 

"Symptoms are coughing, they may be lethargic they may be breathing a little more rapid," said Dr. Waterhouse. 


Experts warn that illness can be deadly for both humans and pets. But it can be cured.

"There is an antifungal medication that is provided for patients with valley fever," concluded Prado. 


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