Two-thirds of all U.S. Valley Fever infections are contracted in Arizona even though nationally, Valley Fever is uncommon and considered an orphan disease. The Arizona Board of Regents established the Valley Fever Center for Excellence at the University of Arizona to improve understanding, medical care, and research about this disease.
There is no reason to believe that people who have had Valley Fever are at higher risk for contracting COVID-19 as Valley fever does not interfere with or weaken a person’s immune system. (May 2020)
Strictly speaking you cannot. But, there are general patterns that are different and can provide you clues:
- COVID-19 is an emerging epidemic. The number of confirmed cases is on the rise and based on current projections, it is expected to peak in Arizona in the next couple of weeks. The risk for Valley fever is ever-present with seasonal fluctuations each year. As COVID-19 hopefully declines over the coming months, the number of Valley fever cases are expected to increase into the summer.
- COVID-19 causes a more acute illness. Chronic COVID-19 illnesses have not been evident. In contrast, while Valley fever sometimes starts abruptly, it typically continues for weeks to several months before symptoms completely resolve.
- The primary complication of COVID-19 is respiratory failure. While Valley fever can result in respiratory failure in rare cases, the infection can also spread to other parts of the body, causing destruction in bones, skin, the brain or elsewhere. (May 2020)
Dr. Galgiani's second quarter message about The Arizona Board of Regents' gift to UArizona, NAU, and ASU to address the environmental impact Valley fever has in our state. You can read the full message HERE.
The Arizona Board of Regents earmarked $3.1 million from the state’s Technology and Research Initiative Fund to support new research into Valley fever detection technology, genomics and seasonal outbreak patterns. This grant will allow UArizona, NAU, and ASU to work togehter to learn more about the environmental markers of Valley fever and find a solution to this longstanding problem. Read more about the grant here: https://healthsciences.arizona.edu/newsroom/news-releases/2022/valley-fe...