This is a disease that many would just as soon sweep under the rug - you've laid the dust out where all can see - Sandra Larson


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The Deadly Valley Fever Epidemic Is Getting Worse in the American Southwest

When Pauline moved to Arizona with her husband, the couple was oblivious to the fungal maelstrom engulfing their new subdivision. Construction workers and street sweepers kicked up the desert dust around them—dust that was invisibly laden with the spores of a killer.

The Coccidioides fungus that Pauline inhaled shortly after moving into her Phoenix house commonly resides in soils of the American Southwest. Infection, called coccidioidomycosis, doesn't produce symptoms in many cases. But when it does, the infection—also known as valley fever—can eat away at its victim’s insides, occasionally leading to death.

The debilitating affliction has reached epidemic proportions in…

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Last Updated : Thursday, April 11, 2019