Diseases Diseases

5 Common Signs Of Parasitic Infectious Diseases

Published at 03/11/2012 14:39:06

Signs of parasitic infectious diseases


Parasitic infectious diseases are diseases that are caused and transmitted by parasites. Parasitic infectious diseases can affect almost all the living organisms including mammals and plants. Some parasites are difficult to control since they are resistant to pesticides. Parasites feed upon their hosts and are a major cause of food borne diseases. When a parasite infects your body, it thrives within the tissue and body organs as they reproduce rapidly. If left untreated, parasitic infectious diseases can be debilitating and even lead to death. Currently, there are no vaccines that can prevent parasitic infectious diseases.

Common types of parasites

Trichinella spiralis: this is a parasitic roundworm that causes trichinosis. It enters the body through ingestion of undercooked pork products. This parasite is a food borne complication and cannot be transferred from one person to the other. The trichinosis symptoms are visible from two days after ingestion of contaminated food. It may feel like a severe flu but the symptoms tend to resolve themselves after two weeks to two months.

Toxoplasma gondii: it is transferred through eating contaminated food, contact with a contaminated cat, organ transplant, blood transfusion and from an infected mother to child. It causes a parasitic infectious disease known as toxoplasmosis. This disease has flu like symptoms in healthy people. To people with compromised immune systems, toxoplasmosis can cause brain or eye damage.

Cyclospora cayetanensis: it causes a condition known as cyclosporiasis. It is transferred through contaminated food and water. Its symptoms are muscle ache, low grade fever, nausea, abdominal pain and vomiting. Cyclosporiasis parasitic infectious diseases cease a month after infection but they can reappear much later.

Giardia duodenalis: it stays in the intestines. It is contracted through consumption of contaminated food and water containing the infective stage of the organism. Symptoms include abdominal pain, nausea and diarrhea. It can last fro six weeks to many years.

Taenia saginata and taenia solium: are caused by consumption of undercooked beef and pork respectively. Taenia saginata is a type of tapeworm and taenia solium is a parasitic worm. Taeniasis parasitic infectious diseases last for many years if not treated and cause weight loss, digestive issues and intestinal obstructions.

Symptoms of parasitic infectious diseases

Diarrhea: most parasites produce a prostaglandin that leads to sodium and chloride loss in the body which in turn causes diarrhea.

Irritable bowel syndrome: the irritable bowel syndrome is one of the parasitic infectious diseases. Parasites attach themselves to the intestinal wall causing irritation and inflammation that leads to muscle spasms, intestinal blockage and malabsorption of nutrients. Its difficult for people with this infection to digest fatty foods.

Constipation: some parasites are large and block the nutrients and waste passage in the digestive system. Parasitic infections in the bile duct and the intestines can result to difficult bowel movement hence constipation.

Joint and muscle ache: parasites move through out the body. Often, they are encysted in the joint and muscles causing pain, aching and irritation that can be mistaken with arthritis. Joint and muscle pain is sometimes caused by the body's response to parasitic infectious diseases.

Allergies: since parasites cause irritation and constipation, making digestion of certain foods difficult, the body responds by producing increased eosinophils an immune system defender. These eosinophilis inflame the body tissues and cause allergic reactions.

Tips and comments

For some parasitic infectious diseases there is no treatment. It is therefore the responsibility of people to ensure that they prevent and control the parasitic infections when they occur. The following are ways of preventing parasitic infectious diseases.

Wash your hands wit soap after using the washrooms
Wear gloves when doing garden work
Pregnant women should not handle cat litter
Wash fruits and vegetables thoroughly
Eat healthy foods that reduce the risk of parasitic infections and avoid eating junk foods
Avoid taking antacid and other things that reduce the stomach acid levels. Low stomach acid levels increase the chance of contracting parasitic infectious diseases.