Several types of histoplasmosis exist. The mildest form produces no signs or symptoms, but severe infections can be life-threatening. When signs and symptoms do occur, they usually appear three to 17 days after exposure and may include:
- Muscle aches
- Dry cough
- Chest discomfort
In some people, histoplasmosis can also produce joint pain and a rash. People who have an underlying lung disease, such as emphysema, may develop a chronic form of histoplasmosis.
Symptoms of chronic histoplasmosis may include weight loss and a cough that brings up blood. The symptoms of chronic histoplasmosis sometimes can mimic those of tuberculosis.
Severe histoplasmosis (a.k.a disseminated histoplasmosis)
- Occurs primarily in infants and in people with compromised immune systems.
- Can affect any part of the body
- If left untreated, usually fatal