Opportunistic diseases: Cocciodioidomicose

What is it?

The Cocciodioidomicose is a fungal infection also commonly called "Valley Fever". It may occur in people with healthy immune systems or suppressed. In people with healthy immune systems, it can cause minor or moderate lung problems. In people with suppressed immune system, it can cause serious lung problems and can also spread to other organs, including bones, joints, lymph nodes, kidneys or skin. It can also cause disease of the central nervous system that can present a risk of falls to be not diagnosed and treated quickly.

Coccidioidomycosis is caused by one of two fungi, Coccidioides immitis e C. posadasii. These fungi are predominantly found in parts of the southwestern United States. This includes the central valley of California, Arizona, New Mexico and parts of Texas, west of El Paso. They can also be found in northeastern Mexico, parts of Central America and Argentina.

lobomycosis handPeople can become infected with C. immitis e C. posadasii by breathing on contaminated soil or sucking dust with these fungi. The highest risk of aspirating these fungi is during dust storms or natural disasters, most notably in the southwestern United States. HIV-positive people with a CD4 cell count below 250 are at a higher risk of developing mild or severe coccidioidomycosis after aspirating fungi. Pregnant women and black and Filipino men are also at increased risk of developing active diseases after being exposed to C. immitis e C. posadasii.

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