Wine & Noses on Nov 14 as previously represented had been canceled until further notice due to unforeseen challenges. However Alcantara Vineyards and Winery is graciously hosting Wine & Noses as a wine tasting benefit that day at a cost of $35. Proceeds after expenses will go directly to U Of A Valley Fever Center for Excellence. Additionally donations will be accepted for Valley Fever Canine vaccine research,
Canines for Soldiers,and Verde Valley Humane Society.
Deadly Dust - Station KVIE Sacramento
The Valley Fever Menace
Money Used to Do PCR (DNA) Diagnostic of Cocci
Congressman David Schweikert calls for action!!!
June 25, 2013
Deborah Lehman, MDMcCarty JM et al.Clin Infect Dis 2013 Jun. Levy ER et al. Clin Infect Dis 2013 Jun. Galgiani JN. Clin Infect Dis 2013 Jun.
In the Southwest U.S., valley fever is endemic but often not recognized.
The incidence of coccidioidomycosis has increased during the past decade. Although infection is frequently asymptomatic, disseminated disease involving lungs, bones, and the central nervous system can occur. The disease burden among children living in endemic areas is under-recognized, resulting in diagnosis and treatment delays. Two case series help fill this knowledge gap.
In a retrospective case series from the epicenter of disease –– California's Central Valley ––investigators identified 33 children with coccidioidomycosis (age range, 6 months–17 years) admitted to a single hospital between January 2010 and September 2011. None of the patients were immunocompromised. Median duration of symptoms prior to diagnosis was 17 days, and the most common presenting symptoms were fever and cough (82% and 73%, respectively). Most patients (85%) had pneumonia, and one third of these children had pleural effusions. Seven children (primarily young) had necrotizing mediastinitis due to multiple abscessed lymph nodes. Five patients had osteomyelitis (most often multifocal). Two patients had meningitis and one of these children died. Overall, 76% of cases responded to initial antifungal therapy (liposomal amphotericin B or fluconazole) and 47% required salvage therapy for progressive disease. Mean length of hospitalization was 54 days. Another case series of 9 patients in California with refractory coccidioidomycosis reported successful salvage therapy with voriconazole and caspofungin.
COMMENT These case series remind us of the widespread havoc infection with Coccidioides immitis and C. posadasii can cause (mediastinitis, tracheolaryngeal infection, multifocal osteomyelitis), and the morbidity that ensues. Early recognition of infection in children living in endemic areas and prompt initiation of treatment is essential to improved outcomes. The author of an accompanying editorial provides a link to:
- McCarty JM et al. Pediatric coccidioidomycosis in central California: A retrospective case series. Clin Infect Dis 2013 Jun; 56:1579. (http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cid/cit114)
- Abstract/FREE Full Text
- Levy ER et al.Treatment of pediatric refractory coccidioidomycosis with combination voriconazole and caspofungin: A retrospective case series. Clin Infect Dis 2013 Jun; 56:1573. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cid/cit113
- Abstract/FREE Full Text
- Galgiani JN. Elements of style in managing coccidioidomycosis.Clin Infect Dis 2013 Jun;56:1586. ( http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cid/cit117)
- FREE Full Text
- See more at:
California's Solar Plague
Experts Share Latest....
Look how this reporter comments on the CDC's report on the bio-hazardous Valley Fever fungus:
"Few people rarely die," the reporter says, comparing it to anthrax (Oh well, since relatively few victims perish, I guess we don't have to worry about the thousands who merely get violently sick and wish they were dead!)
PHOENIX (CBS5) -As of December 2012, there were more than 12,000 cases of Valley Fever throughout Arizona, and doctors say that number will only rise.MORE
Valley Fever Symptoms
Symptoms are not unique to Valley Fever (acute coccidioidomycosis) and tend to resemble those of flu. Specific laboratory tests are used to identify Valley Fever.
- Chest pain — varying from a mild feeling of constriction to intense pressure resembling a heart attack
- Night sweats
- Joint aches
- Red, spotty rash
Dr. Larry Spratling, the chief medical officer at Banner Baywood, said the weather is to blame.
"Rates have been increasing, you might saybecause environmental conditions are just right," he explained.
In the past few years, Arizona has seen an increase in large dust storms, some of which have even enveloped the Valley.
"We're essentially moving into its endemic area. The fungus lives here, it was here before we got here, and I think the conditions are just right for more and more susceptible hosts to experience and exposure," explained Spratling.
Spratling said it is best to stay inside during a dust storm or haboob. However, there are things you should do if you are caught outside during a storm.
"If you do get caught out, I suggest taking a handkerchief, a shirt, anything you can and cover your mouth and your nose," said Spratling.
Corey Schubert was taking out the trash a little more than a year ago during a dust storm.
"I'll be out there two minutes," he recalled.
But a few months later, he started feeling incredibly sick. In fact, he said he thought he was having a heart attack. Rather, he was diagnosed with Valley Fever.
"I really thought I was going to die," said Schubert.
Now he tells his friends what Spratling tells his patients - stay inside during dust storms.
"If there is a dust storm and you're out in it, every minute you're out there you're playing Russian roulette with your lungs," said Schubert.
Copyright 2013 CBS (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
EDITORIAL: Ignoring Valley fever won't solve it - Thursday, Nov. 22, 2012
Valley fever is here. It's getting worse, and it isn't going away.
The number of Valley fever cases is spiking -- with no end in sight, experts say. Today an estimated 150,000 adults and children a year get the disease, prevalent in California and Arizona.
Valley fever is touching, changing and destroying lives, and the Central Valley is a hot spot for the growth of the disease. It has crippled children, debilitated adults and fatally overwhelmed some people's systems. Its victims have been business owners, law enforcement officers, farmworkers, housewives, kids -- including an aspiring little dancer -- and pets.
The Reporting On Health collaborative, which includes Vida en el Valle staff reporter Rebecca Plevin and Yesenia Amaro from the Merced Sun-Star, and about a dozen Valley news media organizations, is doing a series of stories on this indiscriminate and deadly disease.
Known as coccidioidomycosis, Valley fever is caused by a fungus called coccidioides immitis. The fungus is primarily found in the soil in certain parts of the Southwestern United States, Mexico, and Central and South America.
A person can become infected by inhaling the spores of the fungus. The infection starts in the lungs but can spread to other organs, skin and the bones.
The symptoms include a fever, a persistent cough, night sweats, weight loss and different kinds of rashes. Once a person is infected with the fungus, it does not leave the body.
Valley fever usually is diagnosed through a blood test but can be pinpointed through a biopsy at the site of the infection.
But too often it is misdiagnosed, prolonging the victims' agony and complicating treatment -- delays that can turn deadly. Doctors aren't always familiar with the symptoms, which can appear to be the result of colds or the flu.
Public health departments in California do not include Valley fever as part of regular awareness campaigns, like that of the influenza virus. The disease doesn't generate intense media coverage either, unlike the recent outbreak of fungal meningitis. People don't think to ask their doctors to test for the disease.
Eight years ago, a vaccine to stop Valley fever seemed within reach.
But today, early animal trials of experimental vaccines have ground to a halt. Research funds have dried up. And the once-thriving academic effort has slowed dramatically.
Private industry interest is critical to bringing a vaccine out of the laboratory and into doctors' offices and clinics. But there has been no interest by big pharmaceutical companies in investing in Valley fever.
So the disease continues to spread unabated. Perhaps if the disease were concentrated in a more heavily populated and affluent region of the country, it would get more attention and the necessary research dollars.
Making it a health care priority is going to take pressure -- pressure from residents, medical professionals, health departments, university researchers, taxpayers, legislators and the loved ones of those who've suffered from it. Maybe then we can get research dollars flowing again.
After all, those who've been stricken are our neighbors, friends and family members. Whether they live down the street, in another city or in some rural Valley hamlet, their treatment and the fight against this disease must not be ignored -- an all to common approach when it comes to issues plaguing the Valley.
Simply looking the other way won't make Valley fever go away. That will only allow it to continue spreading, until one day it knocks on a door too close to home.
Videos about Valley Fever from Fresno Bee online:
- Sea lion dies at Fresno Chaffee Zoo; Valley fever is blamed
- Valley fever health risks topic of Fresno conference
- Valley Fever: What you need to know
- Inmates sue, sayingi they got Valley Fever while in state prisons
- August is Valley Fever awareness month
- http://mountainenterprise.com/atf.php?sid=10755¤t_edition=2012-08-31 Law Suit Won in Calif. Prison, First Ever
- Dust storms carry health dangers
- Valley Fever: Arizona's Disease
Posted on Maricopa County Medical Society website:
U of A College of Medicine - Phx, St. Joseph's Hospital, Valley Fever Alliance of Arizona Clinicians Create Valley Fever Center.
The Valley Fever Center in Phoenix was established in 2012 as a partnership between St. Joseph’s Medical Center, The University of Arizona College of Medicine in Phoenix, and the Valley Fever Alliance of Arizona Clinicians.
Clinic Director is John Galgiani, MD, an expert of Valley Fever and other infectious diseases. He is a Professor and Director of the Valley Fever Center for Excellence, University of Arizona College of Medicine. He is a member of the Coccidioidomycosis Study Group and a Fellow in the Infectious Diseases Society of America.
To learn more, refer a patient or to make an appointment, call 602-406-VALE (8253). Physicians or patients in need of evaluation and management of Valley Fever are encouraged to contact the Valley Fever Center in Phoenix. Physicians seeking telephone consultation will be connected with one of the center’s valley fever specialists.
See the Valley Fever brochure below for more information.
Joey Votto, Dexter Fowler may only cool a bit, USA TODAY, June 11, 2012
- Ike Davis, 1B, Mets: Let's just say Valley Fever is a Blankety Blank!
- Conor Jackson suffered from the same disease in 2009 , played just 30 games and had a terrible .182/.264/.253 triple slash. Mind you, that came after hitting at least .284 with a .441 or better SLG% for three straight years. Davis was diagnosed with the same condition this spring and carries a .162/.244/.276 line. Uh oh. His BABIP is also a miserable .207, when it has never been lower than .321. Both Davis' K% and GB% are way up, and there is no sign of correction coming. Sometimes it's more than just luck or sometimes a different type altogether. Unlucky for Davis, this Valley Fever has destroyed his season. Hopefully, not his career.
- Dust storms raise valley fever risks - YourWestValley website
Central California Sees Rise in Pediatric Valley Fever
Sierra Club's 2012 Arizona Report Card
Arizona Republic Series on air pollution that ran in Feb. 2012
Valley Fever Center Receives
Seed Grant (Dec 8, 2011)
Stories on the web about Valley Fever
Valley Fever Diagnostic Test
Deadly Dust - Station KVIE Sacramento