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California shows increase in reported valley fever cases for 2017

FILE -- A map from the CDC shows areas where valley fever, also called coccidioidomycosis, is common.

The California Department of Public Health has announced an increase in the number of new valley fever cases.

The findings come from local health departments in California through Oct. 31, compared with the number of cases reported for the same period in 2016.

From January through October, there were more than 5,000 provisional cases of valley fever reported in California. The increase was nearly 1,300 provisional cases over the total for the same period last year.

“With an increase in reported Valley Fever cases, it is important that people living, working, and travelling in California are aware of its symptoms, especially in the southern San Joaquin Valley and the Central Coast, where it is most common,” Dr. Karen Smith of the CDPH said in a news release. “In these areas, anyone who develops flu-like symptoms, such as cough, fever, or difficulty breathing, lasting two weeks or more, should ask their health care provider about Valley Fever.”

The CDPH said it's unknown why there has been an increase in provisional valley fever cases.

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