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Common Infectious Diseases

Often, bacteria, viruses, prions, parasites and fungus cause infectious diseases. Here is a list of common infectious diseases caused by these microorganisms.

Bacterial Infectious Diseases:
Following is a list of common infectious diseases caused by bacteria:

  • Botulism: This disease is caused due to the blockage of nerve functionality and musculoskeletal and respiratory paralysis.
  • Anthrax: Anthrax is caused by the multiplication of Bacillus anthracis bacteria in the human body.
  • Brucellosis: If Brucella bacteria enter the body by direct contact or contaminated/untreated milk of the animals, this condition occurs.
  • Bacterial meningitis: Central nervous system gets inflamed in this disease.
  • Cat scratch disease: This disease develops after a couple of weeks or months of cat scratch. One can experience convulsions, back pain, sterile suppurative papules at the site, abdominal pain, malaise, chills, headache or low fever are the symptoms of cat scratch disease.
  • Campylobacteriosis: This is an inflammatory condition and sometimes one may experience bloody diarrhea or dysentery.
  • Diphtheria: Diphtheria is an upper respiratory tract infection. Symptoms of this condition are low-grade fever, sore throat and an adherent layer on pharynx, nasal cavity, and tonsils.
  • Cholera: If the bacterium Vibrio cholarae is ingested into the body through contaminated water or food, it causes cholera.
  • Gonorrhea: This is a most common STD caused by Neisseria gonorrheae.
  • Epidemic Typhus: This is caused by the louse-borne bacteria.
  • Impetigo: This is a superficial infection of the skin. It is often seen in children between 2 – 6 years of age.
  • Leptospirosis: This is a biphasic disease with renal failure, liver damage and meningitis.
  • Leprosy: This is also known as Hansen’s disease. This is a granulomatous disease of the peripheral nerves and the mucosa of upper respiratory tract.
  • Legionellosis: This causes slight respiratory illness such as acute influenza.
  • Lyme disease: This triggers flu and rash symptoms followed by cardiac, arthritic, neurologic, psychiatric and musculoskeletal manifestations.
  • MRSA infection: This is characterized by muscle depletion and rapid weight loss.
  • Melioidosis: This is caused by Burkholderia pseudomallei and is found in water and soil.
  • Scarlet fever: This infection can occur through the skin or bloodstream and the underlying tissues.
  • Salmonellosis: This causes food-borne illness, typhoid fever and paratyphoid fever.
  • Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever: This is the most severe rickettsial illness in America.
  • Q Fever: This develops because of inhalation of the contaminated particles present in air or direct contact with the milk, urine, semen, feces or vaginal mucus of infected animals.
  • Psittacosis: This disease is contracted from sea gulls, sparrows, ducks, hens, pigeons and parrots.
  • Pneumococcal pneumonia: This is an illness of respiratory system and lungs. In this condition, alveoli get inflamed and filled with the fluid.
  • Plague: Plague is caused by the bite of an infected flea.
  • Pertussis: Severe hacking cough which is followed by difficulty in breathing.
  • Nocardiosis: The bacterium Nocardia brasiliensis or nocardia asteroids afflict the entire body or lungs.
  • Urinary tract infections: These include pyelonephritis or cystitis.
  • Typhus: The symptoms of typhus include delirium, decreasing blood pressure, stupor, chills, cough, rash, severe muscle pain, sustained high fever and severe headache.
  • Typhoid fever: If the food or water is contaminated with the feces of an infected person, this disease spreads rapidly.
  • Tularemia: Inflammation of face, eyes and lymph nodes, loss of appetite, nausea, dizziness, muscle pains, fatigue and headache are the symptoms of tularemia.
  • Tuberculosis: It usually attacks the lungs and can also afflict skin, genitourinary system, joints, bones, lymphatic system, circulatory system and central nervous system.
  • Trachoma: This is an eye disease which can lead to blindness.
  • Tetanus: This is a prolonged contraction of the fibers of skeletal muscle.
  • Syphilis: This is a sexually transmitted disease.
  • Shigellosis: This develops due to poor hygiene.

Fungal Infectious Disease:

  • Tinea Pedis: This condition afflicts the epidermis of the foot.
  • Histoplasmosis: It affects lungs primarily.
  • Cryptococcosis: This is caused by soil inhalation which is contaminated with encapsulated yeast.
  • Coccidioidomycosis: This health condition is caused by inhalation of the airborne, fungal particles known as arthroconidia.
  • Candidiasis: This develops in the moist and exposed body parts such as nipples, oral cavity, folds of skin in diaper area, ear, nostrils and skin around nostrils, foreskin, penis, vulva and vagina.
  • Blastomycosis: This is caused by inhaling fungus from natural soil habitat.
  • Aspergillosis: This is an allergic reaction to aspergillosis, invasive aspergillosis or pulmonary aspergilloma.

Parasitic Infectious Diseases:

  • Trypanosomiasis: This is triggered by protozoan trypanosomes of genus Trypanosoma.
  • Trichomoniasis: This is a sexually transmitted disease which infects genitourinary tract.
  • Trichuriasis: This is a large intestine infection, caused by parasite whipworm.
  • Trichinellosis: This is a health condition which is caused by eating undercooked or raw pork and wild game products that are infected with larvae of roundworm species.
  • Toxoplasmosis: This is caused by ingesting partly cooked or raw meat, drinking water that contains Toxoplasma, contaminated cat feces, infected blood transfusion or organ transplant or transplacental infection in utero.
  • Toxocariasis: This is caused by ingestion of the cat or dog roundworm.
  • Taeniasis: This is caused by consuming pork and beef infected with tapeworms.
  • Schistosomiasis: This is caused by blood infection with schistosome resulting in intestinal and liver damage and weakness.
  • Scabies: This is characterized by intense itching, secondary infection and superficial burrows.
  • Pediculosis: It is caused by lice infestation on the body.
  • Onchocerciasis: This is a leading infectious disease that causes blindness.
  • Myiasis: This is caused by the feeding of fly larvae on host’s living or necrotic tissue.
  • Metagonimiasis: The signs of this health condition are colicky abdominal pain and diarrhea.
  • Malaria: This disease is transmitted by the female Anopheles mosquito.
  • Leishmaniasis: This is transmitted by some types of sand fly.
  • Isosporiasis: The symptoms of this condition are weight loss and diarrhea. It is sometimes associated with AIDS.
  • Hymenolepiasis: This is triggered by Hymenolepis diminuta or Hymenolepis nana.
  • Gnathostomiasis: This is due to the migration of immature worms.
  • Giardiasis: This begins in small intestine.
  • Free-living amebic infection: This health condition is caused by Acanthamoeba and Naegleria fowleri. These are found in air conditioning units, swimming pools, tap water and lakes.
  • Filariasis: This disease is transmitted by deer fly or mosquitoes.
  • Fasciolopsiasis: This health condition is caused when one drinks unheated aquatic water and eats uncooked aquatic plants.
  • Fascioliasis: It is caused by Fasciola gigantic and Fasciola hepatica.
  • Enterobiasis: This is an infection which is triggered by pinworms. Itching of the anus, poor appetite and restless sleep are the symptoms of this condition.
  • Echinococcosis: This is a fatal disease which is caused by the larvae of tapeworm.
  • Dracunculiasis: It is caused by drinking water that is contaminated with infected copepods.
  • Diphyllobothriasis: Diarrhea, weight loss, vomiting and abdominal discomfort are the symptoms of this condition.
  • Cysticercosis: This is caused by tapeworm larvae which are usually found in pork.
  • Cryptosporidiosis: This infection is caused by contaminated material such as water, earth, cross-contaminated or uncooked food in contact with feces of an infected animal or a person.
  • Clonorchiasis: This is caused by Chinese liver fluke.
  • Chagas disease: This is transmitted to human beings by blood-sucking assassin bugs.
  • Babesiosis: Usually it is transmitted by ticks.
  • Ascariasis: This is because of ingestion of the food which is contaminated with the feces containing Ascaris eggs.
  • Amebiasis: This develops because of the ingestion of food or water contaminated with amoebic cysts.
  • African trypanosomiasis: This health condition is transmitted by tsetse fly. Joint pains, fever and headache are the symptoms of this infection.

Prion Infectious Diseases:

  • Transmissible spongiform encephalopathy: It is a group of progressive conditions which afflict the nervous system and brain.
  • Kuru: This is a fatal disease which afflicts the brain. Joint pains, headaches and shaking of limbs are the symptoms of this disease.
  • Fatal familial insomnia: This is a fatal disease. It is a rare autosomal dominant inherited brain disorder.
  • Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease: This is an incurable and rare degenerative neurological disease that is brain disorder.
  • Bovine spongiform encephalopathy: This is a fatal disease. It is a neuro-degenerative disease of cattle which is transmitted to human who consume infected carcasses.
  • Alpers syndrome: This is a progressive degenerative disease which affects the central nervous system.

Common Viral Infectious Diseases:

  • Yellow fever: In South American and African countries, this is the main cause of hemorrhagic illness.
  • West Nile disease: This disease is transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito.
  • Viral pneumonia: This is a health condition associated to respiratory system and lungs.
  • Viral meningitis: This is an inflammation of protective membranes which cover the nervous system.
  • Viral gastroenteritis: This is an infection or inflammation of gastrointestinal tract, usually of the intestines and stomach.
  • Smallpox: This is caused by Variola minor and Variola major. It is also called Variola. It can cause skin scars and sometimes blindness because of infertility in male survivors and corneal ulcerations.
  • SARS: Gastrointestinal symptoms, sore throat and cough, myalgia, lethargy and fever are the symptoms of SARS disease.
  • Rubella: In this condition, virus enters the body through throat or nose.
  • Rabies: This is transmitted through kisses, transplant surgery, aerosol through the mucus membranes and bites.
  • Progressive multifocal leukencephalopathy: This develops in people with severe immune deficiency only.
  • Poliomyelitis: This spreads from one person to another through fecal-oral route, for instance poor hand washing.
  • Mumps: Fever and painful swelling of salivary glands are the symptoms of this condition. In some cases, rashes and painful testicular swelling can also occur.
  • Infectious mononucleosis: This is the most common health condition found in young adults and adolescents. Fatigue, sore throat, muscle soreness and fever are the signs and symptoms.
  • Marburg hemorrhagic fever: This infection spreads through the bodily fluids such as vomit, saliva, excrement and blood.
  • Measles: This is a highly contagious disease which spreads through respiration.
  • Lassa fever: In the initial stage, it affects urinary system, lungs, intestines and mucosa and later vascular system. Finally, it affects each and every tissue in the body.
  • Influenza: Discomfort, coughing, weakness, muscle pains, headache, fever and sore throat are the symptoms of flu.
  • HPV: This is caused by DNA-based viruses which infect the mucus membranes and skin.
  • Herpes zoster: It affects the nervous system with or without skin rashes.
  • Herpes simplex: Fatigue, headache, fluid emission from swelling, swelling, itching and overall gloomy mental state are the symptoms of Herpes simplex.
  • Hepatitis: This is characterized by presence of the inflammatory cells in liver tissues.
  • Foot, mouth and hand disease: Often, this is caused by Coxsackie A virus. Generally, it afflicts the children and infants.
  • Ebola hemorrhagic fever: Vomiting, general body aches, fever, external and internal bleeding and diarrhea are the symptoms of Ebola hemorrhagic disease.
  • Dengue fever: This is transmitted by a mosquito called Aedes aegypti.
  • Colorado tick fever: This infection is transmitted through the bite of an infected wood tick.
  • Cytomegalovirus infection: It generally affects the concerned salivary glands, however it can be found anywhere in the human body.
  • Common cold: This is an upper respiratory system disease. It is also known as acute viral nasopharyngitis.
  • Chickenpox: It is caused by varicella zoster virus. These spots appear on head and body.
  • AIDS related complex: This affects people who are more vulnerable to opportunistic tumors and infections.
  • AIDS: This causes damage to the immune system. It is triggered by human immune-deficiency virus.

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