Tag Archives: infection

Tapeworm infection

A tapeworm infection starts after ingestion of tapeworm eggs or larvae.

An adult tapeworm consists of a head, neck and chain of segments called proglottids. When you have an intestinal tapeworm infection, the tapeworm head adheres to the intestine wall, and the proglottids grow and produce eggs. Adult tapeworms can live for up to 20 years in a host. Intestinal tapeworm infections are usually mild, but invasive tapeworm infections can cause serious complications.

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Plague is a life-threatening infection caused by the organism Yersinia pestis. There are three types of plague. Bubonic plague is the most common type in humans. Infected fleas transmit Y. pestis primarily among rodents. When an outbreak kills many rodents, infected fleas can jump to other animals and humans, spreading the infection. Improved living conditions and health services have made human outbreaks uncommon, but occasional plague cases occur. Concern exists about the use of plague as a biological weapon. Plague bacteria could be put into a form that might be sprayed through the air, infecting anyone inhaling it and causing pneumonic plague. This form affects your lungs and can spread from person to person.

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Tuberculosis (TB) is a life-threatening infection that primarily affects your lungs. Today, despite advances in treatment, TB is a global pandemic, fueled by the spread of HIV/AIDS, poverty, a lack of health services and the emergence of drug-resistant strains of the bacterium that causes the disease. Tuberculosis spreads through airborne droplets when a person with the infection coughs, talks or sneezes. In general, you need prolonged exposure to an infected person before becoming infected yourself. Even then, you may not develop symptoms of the disease or symptoms may not show up until many years later. Left untreated, tuberculosis can be fatal. With proper care, however, most cases of tuberculosis can be treated, even those resistant to the drugs commonly used against the disease.

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Blastocystis hominis infection

Blastocystis hominis (B. hominis) is a microscopic parasite sometimes found in the stools of healthy people as well as in the stool of those who have diarrhea, abdominal pain or other gastrointestinal problems.

Once thought to be a harmless yeast, B. hominis is a parasite, a microscopic single-celled organism (protozoan). It behaves like a tiny animal — hunting and gathering other microbes for food. Many protozoa inhabit your gastrointestinal tract and are harmless; others cause disease. Whether B. hominis is the type of protozoa that causes disease is controversial. Many people who carry Blastocystis hominis have no signs or symptoms. Some people who have this parasite have diarrhea and other symptoms, which some experts believe is caused by an infection with B. hominis. However, Blastocystis hominis often appears with other organisms that may be the actual cause of the signs and symptoms commonly associated with blastocystis infection. So experts aren’t sure whether Blastocystis hominis causes disease or merely serves as an indicator of other agents that might cause diarrheal symptoms. It’s also possible that some people may be carriers of B. hominis and don’t exhibit any signs or symptoms of infection, while other people are more susceptible to infection. Many types of protozoa get into the intestinal tract through oral-fecal contact, such as occurs when a person who doesn’t wash his or her hands thoroughly after using the toilet prepares food. No one knows for certain how B. hominis is transmitted, but experts suspect it’s through oral-fecal contact. Experts do know that the incidence of infection associated with Blastocystis hominis increases in places with inadequate sanitation and poor personal hygiene.

Signs and symptoms that might be associated with a blastocystis infection include:

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Urinary tract infection

A urinary tract infection is an infection that begins in your urinary system. Your urinary system is composed of the kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra. Any part of your urinary system can become infected, but most infections involve the lower urinary tract — the urethra and the bladder.

Women are at greater risk of developing a urinary tract infection than are men. A urinary tract infection limited to your bladder can be painful and annoying. However, serious consequences can occur if a urinary tract infection spreads to your kidneys.

Antibiotics are the typical treatment for a urinary tract infection. But you can take steps to reduce your chance of getting a urinary tract infection in the first place.

Not everyone with a urinary tract infection develops recognizable signs and symptoms, but most people have some.

In general, urinary tract infection signs and symptoms develop rapidly and can include: Continue reading Urinary tract infection