81 Tests, 2019 Articles
and counting ...

MAJOR INFECTIOUS DISEASES AND VACCINATION

PUBLISHED BY: SURENDER KUMAR
OCTOBER 25, 2012

   
  submit to reddit   Delicious   Digg   LinkedIn  

MAJOR INFECTIOUS DISEASES AND VACCINATION

INFECTIOUS DISEASES

Those transmitted from one person to another by means of air, nonliving objects, water, wounds and direct physical contact with the affected person e.g. cholera, dengue, plague, H1N1 (Swine Flu), SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), dysentery, tetanus, cholera, malaria, typhus, AIDS, syphilis, herpes and  common cold etc.

 

 

 

 

VACCINATION  - THE BIOLOGICAL BASIS

A vaccine is a biological preparation which gives the vaccinated person immunity from a specified illness for a considerable time. In most vaccines, either dead or weakened germs of a particular diseases (the germs are always of the same diseases against which the person is to be secured) are injected (or given orally in certain cases) into the body.

 

 

The germs, upon entering the body, prompt it to create its internal defence against the germs, in the form of antibodies (antibodies are chemicals released by the body to fight any external disease). Since the germs injected are too weak to cause any disease but the body is ready with its own defence to fight it, a vaccine provides protection against a disease for a considerable period. In future, if an actual attack of a disease takes place, the body is always ready to fight it. It can be likened to a defence force put on constant alert which can repel the enemy attack any time. In theory, a vaccine can be developed only for a disease caused by a microbe because their entry in the body triggers anti-bodies.

 

 

 

 

                 INFECTIOUS DISEASES

 

TUBERCULOSIS

The tuberculosis of lungs is known as Consumption. It is caused by tubercle bacillus and the major risk factors are - dusty occupation, over-work, chronic worry, starvation, intemperance, malaria and influenza. All these variables make the person more susceptible to TB by way of lowering general vitality and disease resistance.

 

 

SMALLPOX

Caused by a virus. The onset of the disease is sudden, with headache and backache followed by vomiting, fever and a running nose. Eruption on the skin marks the onset of the disease and small red pimples turn into pocks on the third day. The scabs fall off after two weeks, leaving behind scars on the skin.

 

 

CHOLERA

Caused by Cholera vibrio and marked by copious, colourless stools and vomiting, back pain, cramps and suppression of urine.

 

 

TETANUS

Spread by a toxin secreted by Bacillus tetanus, which lives on soil and dust.

 

 

MALARIA

Spread by the bite of female Anopheles mosquito. The malarial parasites (Plasmodium vivax) enter the red-blood corpuscles in the blood where they multiply till the RBCs burst. Repeated, high fever with shivering and a feeling of cold which goes away with sweating. Quinine obtained from the bark of Cinchona is widely used as a preventive medicine in cases of malaria.

 

However, a fatal type of malaria i.e. dengue fever is caused by Plasmodium falciparum (which is carried by Aedis egypti, a mosquito which is active at daytime).

 

 

FILARIA

Caused by the bite of a male mosquito - it generally occurs in Bengal, Bihar and Orissa and practically all those places with poor drainage.

 

 

KALA-AZAR

Spread by the bite of bed bug.  Common in Bihar, Odisha.

 

 

SLEEPING SICKNESS

The causal organism is a protozoan Trypansoma gambiense, carried by the Tse-tse fly. Quite common in Africa. Sleepiness coupled with high fever is its major symptom.

 

 

TYPHOID

The causal organism is Typhoid bacillus. The infection is conveyed mostly through water or milk.

 

 

COMMON COLD

Technically speaking, inflammation of the upper respiratory path.

 

 

PYRRHOEA

An infection of the gums which causes edges of the tooth sockets to bleed easily. In the later stages, pus discharges constantly from the affected gums.

 

 

SCARLET FEVER

Spread by breath and secretions of the nose, mouth and throat. Sudden onset with high fever, shivering, vomiting and a sore throat, flushed cheeks, and marked pale circle round the mouth.

 

 

TYPHUS

Also called ‘jail fever’. Overcrowding and bad hygiene are major causal factors. It is caused by a virus carried by lice.

 

 

RABIES (HYDROPHOBIA)

A disease caused by the bite of a mad dog, cat or jackal. The best treatment available is the vaccine invented by Louis Pasteur.

 

 

DIPHTHERIA

Common among children. Diphtheria causes throat inflammation. It is highly infectious, and the best way to fight it is giving the diphtheria vaccine to prevent its onset.

 

 

POLIO (POLIOMYLETIS)

Also called infantile paralysis. It is a viral infection which affects the nerves controlling limb movement. Usually the muscles affected are those of legs or arms, but if the lungs are affected, the consequences can be fatal. The onset is marked by a sore throat, fever and sometimes vomiting. The Salk vaccine can prevent polio infection.

 

 

MENINGITIS (JAPANESE FEVER)

Inflammation of the meningitis. It usually affects children and is marked by headache, high fever, back pain and stiff neck.

 

 

ENCEPHALITIS

Encephalitis is a viral infection affecting the brain. Headache, sore throat and shivering are its major symptoms. The patient often turns delinquent and exhibits violent behaviour.

 

 

AIDS

Acquired Human Immuno-Deficiency Syndrome is caused by the infection of HIV-3 virus. It leads to a progressive breakdown of natural immunity and its major visible symptoms are unexplained weight loss, opportunistic infections like pneumonia, TB etc.

 

So far, there is no known cure for this disease but the lifespan of the patient can be lengthened and the quality of life can be improved with anti-retroviral therapy.

 

 

 

 


ARCHIVES -- CURRENT AFFAIRS

Tell Us About gkmine.com

We Listen ...


Fortnightly Contest


... WIN Exciting Prizes ...

item-pointer Coming Soon ...

... Previous Winners ...