Arizona Mold Inspection, Mold Testing,
and Mold Removal by EnviroFry
Masters, LLC, Environmental Hygienists

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Phone Toll-Free 1-866-300-1616 or cell phone 1-480-310-7970

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Valley Fever Mold Disease Common
in Arizona and Southern California

Mold causes dozens of serious skin diseases. This page explains one mold-caused skin disease [popularly known as "Valley Fever"] that has afflicted millions of people living in Arizona, southern California, and elsewhere in southwestern United States. This explanation and the photo's below are from the excellent book The Fifth Kingdom by
Bryce Kendrick ---

is a nasty tongue-twister of a name, often contracted to 'coccy', for the disease caused by Coccidioides immitis. This fungus thrives in dry, saline soils, and is endemic in desert areas of the Southwestern U.S., where the disease is often called 'valley fever,' and Mexico (though it is strangely absent from the deserts of Africa and Asia). The process of infection, progress of the disease, and clinical symptoms, are very similar to those of histoplasmosis, though the fungus is not intracellular, and forms spherical structures containing spores. In culture, the same fungus produces chains of alternate thallic-arthric conidia, and has no known teleomorph. Millions of people in the U.S. Southwest have contracted the disease. Fortunately, as in histoplasmosis, most cases are benign, and healing is spontaneous. A few become systemic, and are usually fatal if untreated or misdiagnosed. The disseminated form of this disease is more common among males than females, and among people with darkly pigmented skin.

           The year 2001 has seen an interesting outbreak of this disease in Dinosaur National Monument, Utah.  Ten people who had been working at a 'dig' developed acute respiratory coccoidioidomycosis within two weeks of exposure.  All were treated with fluconazole, with an average hospital stay of 1.5 days, and released apparently none the worse for their experience.  New regulations for digs at Dinosaur call for watering down of the soil before digging, and use of approved respirators (N95).

        For more information and to learn more about this event, please visit the web site:

Ccoccidioidomycosis skin disease caused by Coccidioides immitis mold.

Disseminated coccidioidomycosis,

caused by Coccidioides immitis.