When Dawn got sick four years ago, she started doing her own research to find out what might be causing her symptoms. Her suspicions turned out to be correct, but it took a long time before doctors accurately diagnosed and treated her illness.

Dawn’s illness started with a terrible cough. Soon, she couldn’t sleep because she often coughed up blood at night. “I got very sick. I started to lose my voice and was coughing a lot. I went to an [ear, nose, and throat] specialist, and they told me it was laryngitis,” said Dawn.

Dawn suspected she had something else—a fungal disease called Valley fever (coccidioidomycosis). People can get Valley fever by breathing in small fungal spores from the air in some areas. Dawn lives in Arizona, where many of the cases in the United States occur. “Being originally from the Midwest, I didn’t know [about Valley fever]. I hadn’t heard of Valley fever until I started doing research,” she said.

Read more at CDC…