Blastomycosis Risk & Prevention
Who gets blastomycosis?
Anyone can get blastomycosis if they’ve been in an area where Blastomyces lives in the environment. People who participate in outdoor activities that expose them to wooded areas (such as forestry work, hunting, and camping) in these areas may be at higher risk for getting blastomycosis.1 People who have weakened immune systems may be more likely to develop severe blastomycosis than people who are otherwise healthy.2
Is blastomycosis contagious?
No. Blastomycosis can’t spread between people or between people and animals.
Can my pets get blastomycosis?
Yes. Pets, particularly dogs, can get blastomycosis, but it is not contagious between animals and people.3 The symptoms of blastomycosis in animals are similar to the symptoms in humans. If you are concerned about your pet’s risk of getting blastomycosis or if you think that your pet has blastomycosis, please talk to a veterinarian.
How can I prevent blastomycosis?
There is no vaccine to prevent blastomycosis, and it may not be possible to completely avoid being exposed to the fungus that causes blastomycosis in areas where it is common in the environment. People who have weakened immune systems may want to consider avoiding activities that involve disrupting soil in these areas.
- Saccente M, Woods GL. Clinical and laboratory update on blastomycosisexternal icon. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2010 Apr;23(2):367-81.
- Pappas PG, Threlkeld MG, Bedsole GD, Cleveland KO, Gelfand MS, Dismukes WE. Blastomycosis in immunocompromised patientsexternal icon. Medicine. 1993;72(5):311–25.
- Brömel C, Sykes JE. Epidemiology, diagnosis, and treatment of blastomycosis in dogs and catsexternal icon. Clin Tech Small Anim Pract. 2005 Nov;20(4):233-9.