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Coccidioides/Coccidioidomycosis

Coccidioidomycosis, commonly known as San Joaquin Valley fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever, is a fungal disease caused by Coccidioides immitis or Coccidioides posadasii. When Coccidioides spores Spores The reproductive elements of lower organisms, such as bacteria; fungi; and cryptogamic plants. Anthrax are inhaled, they transform into spherules that result in infection. Coccidioidomycosis is also a common cause of community-acquired pneumonia Community-Acquired Pneumonia Pneumonia in Children and can cause severe disease in the immunocompromised immunocompromised A human or animal whose immunologic mechanism is deficient because of an immunodeficiency disorder or other disease or as the result of the administration of immunosuppressive drugs or radiation. Gastroenteritis. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship may present with fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever, chills Chills The sudden sensation of being cold. It may be accompanied by shivering. Fever, cough, chest pain Chest Pain Chest pain is one of the most common and challenging complaints that may present in an inpatient and outpatient setting. The differential diagnosis of chest pain is large and includes cardiac, gastrointestinal, pulmonary, musculoskeletal, and psychiatric etiologies. Chest Pain, and shortness of breath Shortness of breath Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea. The diagnosis is supported by clinical history, radiology, microscopy, fungal culture, and serological data. Management involves antifungals and supportive care. In severe disease, addressing the etiology of immunosuppression is critical.

Last updated: 17 Jun, 2021

Editorial responsibility: Stanley Oiseth, Lindsay Jones, Evelin Maza

General Characteristics and Epidemiology

Basic features of coccidioides

Taxonomy:

  • Order: Onygenales
  • Family: Onygenaceae
  • Genus: Coccidioides

Forms:

  • Dimorphic fungus
  • Exists as both mycelia or as spherules (asexual forms) 

Reproduction:

  • No sexual form has been found.
  • Mycelia and spherules undergo binary fission Binary fission Cell Types: Eukaryotic versus Prokaryotic.
  • Arthroconidia are the infectious Infectious Febrile Infant particles of the Coccidioides species.
    • Transform into spherules in the lungs Lungs Lungs are the main organs of the respiratory system. Lungs are paired viscera located in the thoracic cavity and are composed of spongy tissue. The primary function of the lungs is to oxygenate blood and eliminate CO2. Lungs: Anatomy and tissues
    • Spherules are filled with endospores that burst and amplify the infection.

Clinically relevant species

Coccidioidomycosis (also known as San Joaquin Valley fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever) can be caused by:

  • Coccidioides immitis 
  • Coccidioides posadasii

Epidemiology

  • In North America, Coccidioides is endemic to the southwestern United States:
    • California
    • Arizona
    • Utah
    • Nevada
    • New Mexico
  • Approximately 30%–60% of people who live in endemic areas are exposed at some point.
  • Incidence Incidence The number of new cases of a given disease during a given period in a specified population. It also is used for the rate at which new events occur in a defined population. It is differentiated from prevalence, which refers to all cases in the population at a given time. Measures of Disease Frequency: approximately 42 cases per 100,000 people
    • Highest incidence Incidence The number of new cases of a given disease during a given period in a specified population. It also is used for the rate at which new events occur in a defined population. It is differentiated from prevalence, which refers to all cases in the population at a given time. Measures of Disease Frequency in elderly
    • Can cause 15%–30% of community pneumonia Pneumonia Pneumonia or pulmonary inflammation is an acute or chronic inflammation of lung tissue. Causes include infection with bacteria, viruses, or fungi. In more rare cases, pneumonia can also be caused through toxic triggers through inhalation of toxic substances, immunological processes, or in the course of radiotherapy. Pneumonia in these areas

Pathogenesis

Reservoir Reservoir Animate or inanimate sources which normally harbor disease-causing organisms and thus serve as potential sources of disease outbreaks. Reservoirs are distinguished from vectors (disease vectors) and carriers, which are agents of disease transmission rather than continuing sources of potential disease outbreaks. Humans may serve both as disease reservoirs and carriers. Escherichia coli

  • Soil in endemic regions
  • Rodents may serve as animal reservoirs (no reported zoonotic transmission to humans).

Transmission

Coccidioides arthroconidia can become airborne when soil is disturbed, allowing transmission via inhalation.

Host risk factors

  • Progressive coccidioidomycosis is uncommon in healthy people, and risk factors include:
    • AIDS AIDS Chronic HIV infection and depletion of CD4 cells eventually results in acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), which can be diagnosed by the presence of certain opportunistic diseases called AIDS-defining conditions. These conditions include a wide spectrum of bacterial, viral, fungal, and parasitic infections as well as several malignancies and generalized conditions. HIV Infection and AIDS infection
    • Use of immunosuppressant medications
    • Chronic steroid use
    • Elderly
    • Pregnant patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship
    • History of diabetes Diabetes Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a metabolic disease characterized by hyperglycemia and dysfunction of the regulation of glucose metabolism by insulin. Type 1 DM is diagnosed mostly in children and young adults as the result of autoimmune destruction of β cells in the pancreas and the resulting lack of insulin. Type 2 DM has a significant association with obesity and is characterized by insulin resistance. Diabetes Mellitus mellitus 
    • African American or Filipino ethnicity 
  • Those with high spore Spore The reproductive elements of lower organisms, such as bacteria; fungi; and cryptogamic plants. Microsporidia/Microsporidiosis exposure Exposure ABCDE Assessment are also at an increased risk:
    • Construction workers
    • Farmers
    • Archaeologists

Pathogenesis

  • Inhalation of arthroconidia → develop into tissue-invasive spherules 
    • Enlarge and rupture, releasing thousands of endospores → can form new spherules
    • Can be self-limiting Self-Limiting Meningitis in Children or cause pulmonary disease Pulmonary disease Diseases involving the respiratory system. Blastomyces/Blastomycosis
    • Can trigger Trigger The type of signal that initiates the inspiratory phase by the ventilator Invasive Mechanical Ventilation local inflammatory response 
      • Infiltration of neutrophils Neutrophils Granular leukocytes having a nucleus with three to five lobes connected by slender threads of chromatin, and cytoplasm containing fine inconspicuous granules and stainable by neutral dyes. Innate Immunity: Phagocytes and Antigen Presentation and eosinophils Eosinophils Granular leukocytes with a nucleus that usually has two lobes connected by a slender thread of chromatin, and cytoplasm containing coarse, round granules that are uniform in size and stainable by eosin. Innate Immunity: Phagocytes and Antigen Presentation
      • Granulomatous response with B and T lymphocytes T lymphocytes Lymphocytes responsible for cell-mediated immunity. Two types have been identified – cytotoxic (t-lymphocytes, cytotoxic) and helper T-lymphocytes (t-lymphocytes, helper-inducer). They are formed when lymphocytes circulate through the thymus gland and differentiate to thymocytes. When exposed to an antigen, they divide rapidly and produce large numbers of new T cells sensitized to that antigen. T cells: Types and Functions and macrophages Macrophages The relatively long-lived phagocytic cell of mammalian tissues that are derived from blood monocytes. Main types are peritoneal macrophages; alveolar macrophages; histiocytes; kupffer cells of the liver; and osteoclasts. They may further differentiate within chronic inflammatory lesions to epithelioid cells or may fuse to form foreign body giant cells or langhans giant cells. Innate Immunity: Phagocytes and Antigen Presentation
  • Disseminated disease occurs via hematogenous Hematogenous Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) and Liver Metastases spread (particularly in immunocompromised immunocompromised A human or animal whose immunologic mechanism is deficient because of an immunodeficiency disorder or other disease or as the result of the administration of immunosuppressive drugs or radiation. Gastroenteritis and pregnant patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship)
  • Cutaneous disease can result from either:
    • Dissemination
    • Direct inoculation

Clinical Presentation and Diagnosis

The clinical presentation Presentation The position or orientation of the fetus at near term or during obstetric labor, determined by its relation to the spine of the mother and the birth canal. The normal position is a vertical, cephalic presentation with the fetal vertex flexed on the neck. Normal and Abnormal Labor can vary from asymptomatic to life-threatening. The incubation Incubation The amount time between exposure to an infectious agent and becoming symptomatic. Rabies Virus period is 1–4 weeks after exposure Exposure ABCDE Assessment.

Constitutional symptoms Constitutional Symptoms Antineutrophil Cytoplasmic Antibody (ANCA)-Associated Vasculitis

Pulmonary involvement

  • Chest pain Chest Pain Chest pain is one of the most common and challenging complaints that may present in an inpatient and outpatient setting. The differential diagnosis of chest pain is large and includes cardiac, gastrointestinal, pulmonary, musculoskeletal, and psychiatric etiologies. Chest Pain
  • Dyspnea Dyspnea Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea
  • Cough
    • Dry or with sputum 
    • May present with hemoptysis Hemoptysis Hemoptysis is defined as the expectoration of blood originating in the lower respiratory tract. Hemoptysis is a consequence of another disease process and can be classified as either life threatening or non-life threatening. Hemoptysis can result in significant morbidity and mortality due to both drowning (reduced gas exchange as the lungs fill with blood) and hemorrhagic shock. Hemoptysis

Cutaneous involvement

Cutaneous involvement may occur in conjunction with pulmonary involvement, with direct inoculation, or from disseminated disease.

  • Single or multiple granulomatous skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions lesions
  • Abscesses
  • Draining sinus tracts
  • Immunologically induced eruptions:
    • Erythema Erythema Redness of the skin produced by congestion of the capillaries. This condition may result from a variety of disease processes. Chalazion multiforme
    • Erythema Erythema Redness of the skin produced by congestion of the capillaries. This condition may result from a variety of disease processes. Chalazion nodosum

Disseminated infection

Disseminated infection is defined as disease outside the thoracic cavity and is considered an AIDS-defining illness. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship can present with the following (this list is not exhaustive):

  • Meningitis Meningitis Meningitis is inflammation of the meninges, the protective membranes of the brain, and spinal cord. The causes of meningitis are varied, with the most common being bacterial or viral infection. The classic presentation of meningitis is a triad of fever, altered mental status, and nuchal rigidity. Meningitis 
  • Muscle pain Pain An unpleasant sensation induced by noxious stimuli which are detected by nerve endings of nociceptive neurons. Pain: Types and Pathways
  • Arthritis Arthritis Acute or chronic inflammation of joints. Osteoarthritis (particularly involving the knee)
  • Osteomyelitis Osteomyelitis Osteomyelitis is an infection of the bone that results from the spread of microorganisms from the blood (hematogenous), nearby infected tissue, or open wounds (non-hematogenous). Infections are most commonly caused by Staphylococcus aureus. Osteomyelitis

Classic triad of coccidioidomycosis

“Desert rheumatism” is often defined by the presence of:

  • Fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever
  • Arthralgia Arthralgia Pain in the joint. Rheumatic Fever
  • Erythema Erythema Redness of the skin produced by congestion of the capillaries. This condition may result from a variety of disease processes. Chalazion nodosum

Diagnosis

The diagnosis is made based on history and physical exam with supporting imaging and laboratory data.

Laboratory investigations

  • Fungal cultures Fungal cultures Dermatophytes/Tinea Infections
  • Microscopy for spherules in body fluid samples
  • Serologic testing
    • Enzyme immunoassay Enzyme immunoassay HIV Infection and AIDS
    • Complement fixation ( IgG IgG The major immunoglobulin isotype class in normal human serum. There are several isotype subclasses of igg, for example, igg1, igg2a, and igg2b. Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis antibodies Antibodies Immunoglobulins (Igs), also known as antibodies, are glycoprotein molecules produced by plasma cells that act in immune responses by recognizing and binding particular antigens. The various Ig classes are IgG (the most abundant), IgM, IgE, IgD, and IgA, which differ in their biologic features, structure, target specificity, and distribution. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions)
    • Immunodiffusion kit ( IgM IgM A class of immunoglobulin bearing mu chains (immunoglobulin mu-chains). Igm can fix complement. The name comes from its high molecular weight and originally being called a macroglobulin. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions or IgG IgG The major immunoglobulin isotype class in normal human serum. There are several isotype subclasses of igg, for example, igg1, igg2a, and igg2b. Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis antibodies Antibodies Immunoglobulins (Igs), also known as antibodies, are glycoprotein molecules produced by plasma cells that act in immune responses by recognizing and binding particular antigens. The various Ig classes are IgG (the most abundant), IgM, IgE, IgD, and IgA, which differ in their biologic features, structure, target specificity, and distribution. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions)
  • PCR PCR Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a technique that amplifies DNA fragments exponentially for analysis. The process is highly specific, allowing for the targeting of specific genomic sequences, even with minuscule sample amounts. The PCR cycles multiple times through 3 phases: denaturation of the template DNA, annealing of a specific primer to the individual DNA strands, and synthesis/elongation of new DNA molecules. Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) for lower respiratory tract samples (not widely available)
  • Urine Urine Liquid by-product of excretion produced in the kidneys, temporarily stored in the bladder until discharge through the urethra. Bowen Disease and Erythroplasia of Queyrat antigen Antigen Substances that are recognized by the immune system and induce an immune reaction. Vaccination testing

Imaging modalities

  • Chest radiography
    • Pulmonary infiltrates, nodules, and cavities
    • Pleural effusions
    • Adenopathy
  • CT chest
    • Pleural infiltrates
    • Pleural effusions
    • Hilar adenopathy
    • Cavities
    • Diffuse miliary pattern in immunosuppressed
Anteroposterior chest x-ray pulmonary fibrosis coccidioidomycosis

This anteroposterior chest X-ray X-ray Penetrating electromagnetic radiation emitted when the inner orbital electrons of an atom are excited and release radiant energy. X-ray wavelengths range from 1 pm to 10 nm. Hard x-rays are the higher energy, shorter wavelength x-rays. Soft x-rays or grenz rays are less energetic and longer in wavelength. The short wavelength end of the x-ray spectrum overlaps the gamma rays wavelength range. The distinction between gamma rays and x-rays is based on their radiation source. Pulmonary Function Tests revealed pulmonary changes indicative of pulmonary fibrosis Pulmonary Fibrosis Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is a specific entity of the major idiopathic interstitial pneumonia classification of interstitial lung diseases. As implied by the name, the exact causes are poorly understood. Patients often present in the moderate to advanced stage with progressive dyspnea and nonproductive cough. Pulmonary Fibrosis in a case of coccidioidomycosis, caused by fungal organisms of the genus Coccidioides:
Because these changes also resemble those seen in other lung infections Infections Invasion of the host organism by microorganisms or their toxins or by parasites that can cause pathological conditions or diseases. Chronic Granulomatous Disease, including tuberculosis Tuberculosis Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex bacteria. The bacteria usually attack the lungs but can also damage other parts of the body. Approximately 30% of people around the world are infected with this pathogen, with the majority harboring a latent infection. Tuberculosis spreads through the air when a person with active pulmonary infection coughs or sneezes. Tuberculosis, the findings uncovered with a chest X-ray X-ray Penetrating electromagnetic radiation emitted when the inner orbital electrons of an atom are excited and release radiant energy. X-ray wavelengths range from 1 pm to 10 nm. Hard x-rays are the higher energy, shorter wavelength x-rays. Soft x-rays or grenz rays are less energetic and longer in wavelength. The short wavelength end of the x-ray spectrum overlaps the gamma rays wavelength range. The distinction between gamma rays and x-rays is based on their radiation source. Pulmonary Function Tests need to be coupled with serologic testing as well as possible tissue biopsy Biopsy Removal and pathologic examination of specimens from the living body. Ewing Sarcoma. The degree of fibrotic changes, indicative of scarring Scarring Inflammation found on X-ray X-ray Penetrating electromagnetic radiation emitted when the inner orbital electrons of an atom are excited and release radiant energy. X-ray wavelengths range from 1 pm to 10 nm. Hard x-rays are the higher energy, shorter wavelength x-rays. Soft x-rays or grenz rays are less energetic and longer in wavelength. The short wavelength end of the x-ray spectrum overlaps the gamma rays wavelength range. The distinction between gamma rays and x-rays is based on their radiation source. Pulmonary Function Tests, can be directly correlated to the severity of the fungal infection.

Image: “A case of pulmonary fibrosis Pulmonary Fibrosis Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is a specific entity of the major idiopathic interstitial pneumonia classification of interstitial lung diseases. As implied by the name, the exact causes are poorly understood. Patients often present in the moderate to advanced stage with progressive dyspnea and nonproductive cough. Pulmonary Fibrosis caused by coccidioidomycosis” by CDC/Dr. Lucille K. Georg. License: Public Domain

Invasive sampling

  • Bronchoscopy Bronchoscopy Endoscopic examination, therapy or surgery of the bronchi. Laryngomalacia and Tracheomalacia with bronchoalveolar lavage Bronchoalveolar lavage Washing out of the lungs with saline or mucolytic agents for diagnostic or therapeutic purposes. It is very useful in the diagnosis of diffuse pulmonary infiltrates in immunosuppressed patients. Pulmonary Fibrosis
  • Cerebral spinal fluid
  • Biopsy Biopsy Removal and pathologic examination of specimens from the living body. Ewing Sarcoma of infected site

Management

General treatment strategies

  • Mild asymptomatic cases do not require treatment.
  • Antimicrobials for symptomatic patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship or risk factors for disseminated disease 
  • Manage etiology of immunosuppression.
  • Supportive care with respiratory adjuvants and hemodynamic support
  • Surgery may be needed for progressive cavitary disease.

Antimicrobial therapy

  • Fluconazole Fluconazole Triazole antifungal agent that is used to treat oropharyngeal candidiasis and cryptococcal meningitis in aids. Azoles (preferred) or itraconazole Itraconazole A triazole antifungal agent that inhibits cytochrome p-450-dependent enzymes required for ergosterol synthesis. Azoles for mild-to-moderate disease
  • Posaconazole Posaconazole Azoles and voriconazole Voriconazole A triazole antifungal agent that specifically inhibits sterol 14-alpha-demethylase and cytochrome p-450 cyp3a. Azoles are alternative therapies.
  • Amphotericin B Amphotericin B Macrolide antifungal antibiotic produced by streptomyces nodosus obtained from soil of the orinoco river region of venezuela. Polyenes:
    • Preferred for severe disease or persistent infections Infections Invasion of the host organism by microorganisms or their toxins or by parasites that can cause pathological conditions or diseases. Chronic Granulomatous Disease
    • Switch to oral azole therapy once stabilized.

Complications and Prevention

Complications

Listed complications are associated with being immunocompromised immunocompromised A human or animal whose immunologic mechanism is deficient because of an immunodeficiency disorder or other disease or as the result of the administration of immunosuppressive drugs or radiation. Gastroenteritis and/or delay in treatment:

  • Severe pneumonia Pneumonia Pneumonia or pulmonary inflammation is an acute or chronic inflammation of lung tissue. Causes include infection with bacteria, viruses, or fungi. In more rare cases, pneumonia can also be caused through toxic triggers through inhalation of toxic substances, immunological processes, or in the course of radiotherapy. Pneumonia, progressing to ARDS ARDS Acute respiratory distress syndrome is characterized by the sudden onset of hypoxemia and bilateral pulmonary edema without cardiac failure. Sepsis is the most common cause of ARDS. The underlying mechanism and histologic correlate is diffuse alveolar damage (DAD). Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS)
  • Pulmonary cavities 
    • May require surgical resection
    • Secondary bacterial or other fungal pneumonia Pneumonia Pneumonia or pulmonary inflammation is an acute or chronic inflammation of lung tissue. Causes include infection with bacteria, viruses, or fungi. In more rare cases, pneumonia can also be caused through toxic triggers through inhalation of toxic substances, immunological processes, or in the course of radiotherapy. Pneumonia may result from an existing cavity.
    • Pyopneumothorax can result from a ruptured cavity.
    • Ruptured cavities can lead to bronchopleural fistulas.
  • Chronic fibrocavitary pneumonia Pneumonia Pneumonia or pulmonary inflammation is an acute or chronic inflammation of lung tissue. Causes include infection with bacteria, viruses, or fungi. In more rare cases, pneumonia can also be caused through toxic triggers through inhalation of toxic substances, immunological processes, or in the course of radiotherapy. Pneumonia 
  • Disseminated disease

Prevention

It is difficult to prevent coccidioidomycosis when living in an endemic area. General strategies include:

  • Avoiding areas of dust (e.g., construction sites or excavation sites)
  • Wearing a respirator if unable to avoid dust
  • Avoiding contact with dirt
  • Avoiding dust storms
  • Addressing etiology of the immunocompromised immunocompromised A human or animal whose immunologic mechanism is deficient because of an immunodeficiency disorder or other disease or as the result of the administration of immunosuppressive drugs or radiation. Gastroenteritis state

Differential Diagnosis

  • Bacterial pneumonia Pneumonia Pneumonia or pulmonary inflammation is an acute or chronic inflammation of lung tissue. Causes include infection with bacteria, viruses, or fungi. In more rare cases, pneumonia can also be caused through toxic triggers through inhalation of toxic substances, immunological processes, or in the course of radiotherapy. Pneumonia: patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship may present with fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever, shortness of breath Shortness of breath Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea, cough, and malaise Malaise Tick-borne Encephalitis Virus. A thorough history should address risk factors for typical versus atypical bacterial pneumonias. Diagnosis is based on history, exam, imaging, cultures Cultures Klebsiella, and antigen Antigen Substances that are recognized by the immune system and induce an immune reaction. Vaccination testing. Treatments include supportive care, supplemental oxygenation, and antimicrobials. 
  • Blastomycosis Blastomycosis Blastomycosis is an infection caused by inhalation of the spores of the fungus, Blastomyces. Blastomyces species thrive in moist soil and decaying material and are common in the Ohio and Mississippi River valleys and the Great Lakes regions of the United States and Canada. Although most patients are asymptomatic, some can develop pneumonia. Blastomyces/Blastomycosis: endemic to the Ohio and Mississippi River valleys and the Great Lakes regions of the United States. Blastomycosis Blastomycosis Blastomycosis is an infection caused by inhalation of the spores of the fungus, Blastomyces. Blastomyces species thrive in moist soil and decaying material and are common in the Ohio and Mississippi River valleys and the Great Lakes regions of the United States and Canada. Although most patients are asymptomatic, some can develop pneumonia. Blastomyces/Blastomycosis can present with pneumonia Pneumonia Pneumonia or pulmonary inflammation is an acute or chronic inflammation of lung tissue. Causes include infection with bacteria, viruses, or fungi. In more rare cases, pneumonia can also be caused through toxic triggers through inhalation of toxic substances, immunological processes, or in the course of radiotherapy. Pneumonia, skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions lesions, osteomyelitis Osteomyelitis Osteomyelitis is an infection of the bone that results from the spread of microorganisms from the blood (hematogenous), nearby infected tissue, or open wounds (non-hematogenous). Infections are most commonly caused by Staphylococcus aureus. Osteomyelitis, and meningitis Meningitis Meningitis is inflammation of the meninges, the protective membranes of the brain, and spinal cord. The causes of meningitis are varied, with the most common being bacterial or viral infection. The classic presentation of meningitis is a triad of fever, altered mental status, and nuchal rigidity. Meningitis. The diagnosis is made by identifying the organism in sputum or tissue samples, culture, PCR PCR Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a technique that amplifies DNA fragments exponentially for analysis. The process is highly specific, allowing for the targeting of specific genomic sequences, even with minuscule sample amounts. The PCR cycles multiple times through 3 phases: denaturation of the template DNA, annealing of a specific primer to the individual DNA strands, and synthesis/elongation of new DNA molecules. Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), or antigen Antigen Substances that are recognized by the immune system and induce an immune reaction. Vaccination testing. Antifungals are used for treatment.
  • Histoplasmosis Histoplasmosis Histoplasmosis is an infection caused by Histoplasma capsulatum, a dimorphic fungus. Transmission is through inhalation, and exposure to soils containing bird or bat droppings increases the risk of infection. Most infections are asymptomatic; however, immunocompromised individuals generally develop acute pulmonary infection, chronic infection, or even disseminated disease. Histoplasma/Histoplasmosis: endemic to the Mississippi and Ohio River valleys. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship can present with pneumonia Pneumonia Pneumonia or pulmonary inflammation is an acute or chronic inflammation of lung tissue. Causes include infection with bacteria, viruses, or fungi. In more rare cases, pneumonia can also be caused through toxic triggers through inhalation of toxic substances, immunological processes, or in the course of radiotherapy. Pneumonia, lymphadenopathy Lymphadenopathy Lymphadenopathy is lymph node enlargement (> 1 cm) and is benign and self-limited in most patients. Etiologies include malignancy, infection, and autoimmune disorders, as well as iatrogenic causes such as the use of certain medications. Generalized lymphadenopathy often indicates underlying systemic disease. Lymphadenopathy, hepatosplenomegaly Hepatosplenomegaly Cytomegalovirus, and oral ulcerations. Diagnosis is made with fungal cultures Fungal cultures Dermatophytes/Tinea Infections, serology Serology The study of serum, especially of antigen-antibody reactions in vitro. Yellow Fever Virus, and antigen Antigen Substances that are recognized by the immune system and induce an immune reaction. Vaccination testing. Treatment is with antifungals and supportive care.
  • Tuberculosis Tuberculosis Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex bacteria. The bacteria usually attack the lungs but can also damage other parts of the body. Approximately 30% of people around the world are infected with this pathogen, with the majority harboring a latent infection. Tuberculosis spreads through the air when a person with active pulmonary infection coughs or sneezes. Tuberculosis: an infectious Infectious Febrile Infant disease caused by the Mycobacterium tuberculosis Mycobacterium tuberculosis Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex bacteria. The bacteria usually attack the lungs but can also damage other parts of the body. Approximately 30% of people around the world are infected with this pathogen, with the majority harboring a latent infection. Tuberculosis spreads through the air when a person with active pulmonary infection coughs or sneezes. Tuberculosis complex bacteria Bacteria Bacteria are prokaryotic single-celled microorganisms that are metabolically active and divide by binary fission. Some of these organisms play a significant role in the pathogenesis of diseases. Bacteriology. Pulmonary disease Pulmonary disease Diseases involving the respiratory system. Blastomyces/Blastomycosis presents with fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever, night sweats Night sweats Tuberculosis, cough, hemoptysis Hemoptysis Hemoptysis is defined as the expectoration of blood originating in the lower respiratory tract. Hemoptysis is a consequence of another disease process and can be classified as either life threatening or non-life threatening. Hemoptysis can result in significant morbidity and mortality due to both drowning (reduced gas exchange as the lungs fill with blood) and hemorrhagic shock. Hemoptysis, fatigue Fatigue The state of weariness following a period of exertion, mental or physical, characterized by a decreased capacity for work and reduced efficiency to respond to stimuli. Fibromyalgia, and weight loss Weight loss Decrease in existing body weight. Bariatric Surgery. Extrapulmonary manifestations can include pleurisy Pleurisy Pleuritis, also known as pleurisy, is an inflammation of the visceral and parietal layers of the pleural membranes of the lungs. The condition can be primary or secondary and results in sudden, sharp, and intense chest pain on inhalation and exhalation. Pleuritis, meningitis Meningitis Meningitis is inflammation of the meninges, the protective membranes of the brain, and spinal cord. The causes of meningitis are varied, with the most common being bacterial or viral infection. The classic presentation of meningitis is a triad of fever, altered mental status, and nuchal rigidity. Meningitis, Pott disease, pericarditis Pericarditis Pericarditis is an inflammation of the pericardium, often with fluid accumulation. It can be caused by infection (often viral), myocardial infarction, drugs, malignancies, metabolic disorders, autoimmune disorders, or trauma. Acute, subacute, and chronic forms exist. Pericarditis, and miliary disease. The diagnosis is established with tuberculin Tuberculin A protein extracted from boiled culture of tubercle bacilli (Mycobacterium tuberculosis). It is used in the tuberculin skin test (tuberculin test) for the diagnosis of tuberculosis infection in asymptomatic persons. Type IV Hypersensitivity Reaction skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions test, sputum culture, and lung imaging. The mainstay of management is anti-mycobacterial drugs.
  • Sarcoidosis Sarcoidosis Sarcoidosis is a multisystem inflammatory disease that causes noncaseating granulomas. The exact etiology is unknown. Sarcoidosis usually affects the lungs and thoracic lymph nodes, but it can also affect almost every system in the body, including the skin, heart, and eyes, most commonly. Sarcoidosis: an inflammatory disorder characterized by noncaseating granulomas Noncaseating granulomas Crohn’s Disease in the lungs Lungs Lungs are the main organs of the respiratory system. Lungs are paired viscera located in the thoracic cavity and are composed of spongy tissue. The primary function of the lungs is to oxygenate blood and eliminate CO2. Lungs: Anatomy, liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy, brain Brain The part of central nervous system that is contained within the skull (cranium). Arising from the neural tube, the embryonic brain is comprised of three major parts including prosencephalon (the forebrain); mesencephalon (the midbrain); and rhombencephalon (the hindbrain). The developed brain consists of cerebrum; cerebellum; and other structures in the brain stem. Nervous System: Anatomy, Structure, and Classification, eyes, and skin Skin The skin, also referred to as the integumentary system, is the largest organ of the body. The skin is primarily composed of the epidermis (outer layer) and dermis (deep layer). The epidermis is primarily composed of keratinocytes that undergo rapid turnover, while the dermis contains dense layers of connective tissue. Skin: Structure and Functions. Diagnosis may be suggested radiographically and confirmed by biopsy Biopsy Removal and pathologic examination of specimens from the living body. Ewing Sarcoma. Treatment is with corticosteroids Corticosteroids Chorioretinitis and other immunosuppressive agents.

References

  1. Akram, SM. (2021). Coccidioidomycosis. StatPearls. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK448161/
  2. Ampel, NM, & Hoover, SE. (2015). Pathogenesis of coccidioidomycosis. Current Fungal Infection Reports, 9(4), 253–258. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12281-015-0242-1
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020). About valley fever. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/fungal/diseases/coccidioidomycosis/definition.html
  4. Galgiani, JN, Ampel, NM, Blair, JE, Catanzaro, A, Johnson, RH, Stevens, DA, & Williams, PL. (2005). Coccidioidomycosis. Clinical Infectious Diseases, 41(9), 1217–1223. https://doi.org/10.1086/496991
  5. Revankar, SG. (2021). Coccidioidomycosis (San Joaquin fever; Valley fever). MSD Manual Professional Version. Retrieved June 11, 2021, from https://www.msdmanuals.com/professional/infectious-diseases/fungi/coccidioidomycosis
  6. Blair, JE, & Ampel, NM. (2020). Primary pulmonary coccidioidal infection. In Mitty, J. (Ed.), UpToDate. Retrieved June 11, 2021, from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/primary-pulmonary-coccidioidal-infection
  7. Blair, JE, & Ampel, NM. (2020). Coccidioidomycosis: Laboratory diagnosis and screening. In Mitty, J. (Ed.), UpToDate. Retrieved June 11, 2021, from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/coccidioidomycosis-laboratory-diagnosis-and-screening
  8. Jaroszewski, D, Blair, JE, & Ampel, NM. (2019). Management of pulmonary sequelae and complications of coccidioidomycosis. In Mitty, J. (Ed.), UpToDate. Retrieved June 11, 2021, from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/management-of-pulmonary-sequelae-and-complications-of-coccidioidomycosis
  9. Hospenthal, DR, Thompson III, GR, Oppenheimer, AP, and Arsura, EL. (2019). Coccidioidomycosis and valley fever. In Bronze, M.S. (Ed.), Medscape. Retrieved June 11, 2021, from https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/215978-overview

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