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May 1994

Emerging Infectious Diseases: Coccidioidomycosis Following the Northridge Earthquake— California, 1994

Arch Dermatol. 1994;130(5):555-556. doi:10.1001/archderm.1994.01690050017002

FROM January 24 through March 15, 1994, 170 persons with laboratory evidence of acute coccidioidomycosis* were identified in Ventura County, California. This number—which comprises cases identified through active surveillance—substantially exceeds the total number of coccidioidomycosis cases (52) reported through routine passive surveillance during all of 1993 in Ventura County, which has been considered an area of low incidence for this disease. The increase in cases follows the January 17 earthquake centered in Northridge (in adjacent Los Angeles County), which may have exposed Ventura County residents to increased levels of airborne dust. The California Department of Health Services, local public health agencies, and CDC are conducting an investigation to determine the magnitude of the outbreak, risk factors for infection, and its possible association with the Northridge earthquake.

Reported by:  D Pappagianis, MD, Univ of California, Davis; G Feld- man, MD, M Billimek, MSH, Ventura tura County Public Health Dept, Ventura; L

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