Infection – Definition and Symptoms

Definition of Infection Infection – The invasion of the body by a pathogen (microorganism capable of causing disease), sometimes called an infectious agent, that enters cells and attempts to reproduce or replicate itself. The pathogen may be a bacterium, fungus (yeast or mold), virus, parasite, or prion. Not all infections cause symptoms or illness, and some infections may be present in […]

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Meningitis (Viral Infection) – Symptoms and Treatment

Meningitis Definition Inflammation of the meninges, the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord. Meningitis may result from bacterial, viral, or fungal infection. Viruses are the most common causes of meningitis and can be highly contagious. Enteroviruses and Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib) virus are the common viral causes, though many viruses can cause meningitis. Bacterial meningitis may be […]

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Waterborne Illnesses (diseases)

Waterborne Illnesses Definition Diseases that result from pathogens transmitted by drinking or otherwise consuming contaminated water. Heavy metals and industrial chemicals may also contaminate water supplies, causing poisoning. People may acquire waterborne infections through drinking water supplies or by swallowing water during recreational activities in lakes, rivers, pools, hot tubs, and similar sources. Drinking water […]

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Antifungal Medications and Treatment

Antifungal Medications Drugs that kill fungi (yeast). Antifungal medications are available for topical or systemic treatment. Some fungal infections require both. Antifungal medications work through various mechanisms to interfere with the ability of fungi to survive or reproduce. Broadspectrum antifungal medications are effective for treating a variety of fungal infections; narrow-spectrum antifungals are effective in […]

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Candidiasis / Candida – Symptoms and Treatment

Definition of Candidiasis – Candida Candidiasis / Candida – An illness resulting from infection with fungi (also called yeasts) from the Candida family, most commonly Candida albicans, though other Candida species may also cause infection. Candidiasis, commonly called yeast infection (or thrush when it involves the mouth), affects the mucous membranes of the mouth, esophagus, urinary tract, […]

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Coccidioidomycosis – Symptoms and Treatment

Coccidioidomycosis Definition An illness resulting from infection with the spores of the fungus Coccidioides immitis, which occurs naturally in the soil in desert environments, inhaled into the lungs. Coccidioidomycosis affects the respiratory tract, primarily the lungs. About half of people infected with Coccidioides immitis do not become ill. The immune system can successfully neutralize small numbers of […]

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Onychomycosis Infection – Treatment

Definition of Onychomycosis A common fungal infection, typically candidiasis or tinea, of the fingernail or toenail. The infection causes the nail to thicken, discolor, fragment, and peel or crack. Though some people experience itching, pain, or other discomfort, most people seek medical care because of the nail’s appearance. Onychomycosis affects the structure and function of the nail, however. Onychomycosis affecting […]

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Tinea infection – Ringworm – Capitis, Corporis

Definition of Tinea Tinea is a common fungal infection of the skin, involving the layers (including the hair and nails) that are cornified (composed of dead keratinocytes). Several species of fungi, known collectively as dermatophytes, cause tinea infection (also called dermatophytosis). People commonly refer to some forms of tinea as ringworm because the lesions have the appearance of […]

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Cryptococcosis / Cryptococcus and Symptoms

Definition of Cryptococcosis An illness that results from infection with the fungus Cryptococcus neoformans, which is abundant in soil worldwide. Cryptococcosis may affect the meninges (membranes covering the brain and spinal cord), the lungs, or the skin. Infection is most likely in people who are immunocompromised and is a particular risk in those who have hiv/aids, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, […]

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Foodborne Illnesses – Symptoms and Treatment

Definition of Foodborne Illnesses and Symptoms Foodborne illnesses – Diseases resulting from consumption of foods contaminated with pathogenic bacteria, fungi, parasites, or viruses. Foodborne illnesses, also called food poisoning, are common, affecting 76 million Americans each year. There are several hundred known foodborne illnesses, most of which cause mild to moderate gastrointestinal symptoms including abdominal cramping, nausea, […]

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