Coccidioidomycosis (Valley fever)
-- Infection caused by breathing spores of a fungus found in soil. It is not contagious. The disease is most common in desert areas of California, Arizona and Texas. Symptoms often resemble a common cold or influenza. See Influenza. Spontaneous recovery usually occurs in 3 to 6 weeks. Rarely, the infection can spread throughout the body and brain causing a life-threatening illness.