Coccidioidomycosis: Changing perceptions and creating opportunities for its control

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

24 Scopus citations


The perceptions of coccidioidomycosis as a medical problem has undergone sequential and dramatic metamorphoses since its first description more than a century ago. First thought to be rare and lethal, coccidioidomycosis was subsequently found to be common and often mild. During World War II, its overall impact upon large populations came sharply into focus and the consequences for public health became clearer. Early treatments had significant limitations and toxicities, and therefore treatment of coccidioidomycosis was reserved for only the sickest patients. Since then, safer oral therapies have become commonplace. Despite their availability, there has been no investigation of their use in the less severe and much more common early infections. Even newer drugs such as nikkomycin Z, which might actually cure infections, until very recently have had trouble finding a sponsor to move it through clinical trials. Perceptions once formed by the understanding of coccidioidomycosis as a medical problem now appear to hinder the future study of newer therapeutic opportunities. It is suggested in this review that it is time to revisit and possibly change these perceptions if we are to improve our care of patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCoccidioidomycosis Sixth International Symposium
PublisherBlackwell Publishing Inc.
Number of pages18
ISBN (Print)1573316881, 9781573316880
StatePublished - Sep 2007

Publication series

NameAnnals of the New York Academy of Sciences


  • Antifungal therapies
  • Medical history
  • Public health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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