Coccidioidomycosis, commonly known as 'Valley fever', as well as 'California fever', 'Desert rheumatism', and 'San Joaquin Valley fever') is a fungal disease caused by Coccidioides immitis or C. posadasii. It is endemic in certain parts of Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Utah and northwestern Mexico. C. immitis resides in the soil in certain parts of the southwestern United States, northern Mexico, and parts of Central and South America. It is dormant during long dry spells, then develops as a mold with long filaments that break off into airborne spores when the rains come. The spores, known as arthroconidia, are swept into the air by disruption of the soil, such as during construction, farming, or an earthquake. Infection is caused by inhalation of the particles. The disease is not transmitted from person to person. The infection ordinarily resolves leaving the patient with a specific immunity to re-infection.C.
Contributions by Murus, MarcoTolo, and Arcadian.