Parasitic Infections

Parasitic Infections

Parasitic Infections
Parasitic infections begin when a person comes into contact with a disease-causing parasite like tapeworms, roundworms. You can contract these types of infections through contact with contaminated food, soil or water, often in tropical regions. Symptoms of parasitic infections can include digestive problems, irritability, chronic fatigue, acne, rashes, sleep problems, anemia, muscle cramps, allergies and headaches. While there is no vaccine, treatment for parasites can include medications or topical applications.

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    Symptoms arising from parasitic gastrointestinal infection by Giardia lamblia include abdominal cramping, foul-smelling diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, flatulence, and weight loss. Giardiasis can usually be treated relatively easily with oral anthelmintic medication such as metronidazole. Symptoms suggestive of giardiasis should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider immediately.

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    There are several things you can do to manage the itching that goes along with scabies. Antihistamines, calamine lotion, and wet towels are home remedies that can help. In addition, infestation can be prevented by cleaning the bedding, clothes, and other shared objects thoroughly.

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    Diagnosis of scabies, a parasitic infection, is quite simple. You should tell your doctor about any intense itching. He or she will look at the mite burrows (thin red lines and bumps) to arrive at the diagnosis. A microscopic examination of a burrow scraping will confirm the presence of mites, eggs, or mite feces.

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    Drinking untreated water -- from a well, stream, or contaminated water system -- can cause diarrhea that may develop within just a few days or up to as much as four weeks after ingestion. It's not the water that's the problem, but the parasites that live in it.

    One of the most common parasites found in untreated water is Giardia lamblia, often simply called giardia (gee-ARE-dee-ah). Outdoor enthusiasts often pick up the parasite from drinking stream or lake water during camping or hiking trips.

    How can you tell if you're infected with giardia? Your doctor will need to test a sample of your stool. If the results are positive, you may be given an antiparasitic drug (a type of antibiotic), such as tinidazole, metronidazole, nitazoxanide, or paromomycin.

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    A , Family Medicine, answered

    It is very difficult to prevent scabies. You can avoid coming into skin to skin contact with an infected person until they have been treated. If a person in your house has scabies, everyone should be treated.

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    Pinworms (enterobiasis) are spread by direct contact with pinworm eggs. This can occur in several ways: an affected individual not washing hands after using the bathroom, consuming the eggs in food or coming into contact with clothing, bedding or other objects carrying eggs.
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    A , Internal Medicine, answered
    Just when you thought it was safe to go to bed, your child tells you that his tushy itches, and he's scratching his behind more than a ballistic baboon. Your flashlight reveals the intruders: pin-sized, white, stringy things peeping out at you from around the anus. Pinworms come from spores that are in dirt and the environment (think: sandbox) and that find their way from a kid's hand to his mouth.
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    Scabies is a parasitic, contagious infection. People with a weakened immune systems or chronic illness are more likely to contract the disease. Examples of such groups include HIV patients, cancer patients, and very old people. In addition, the disease spreads through contact with people who are infected with scabies. Using the same bedcovers, clothes, and objects all increase the risk for scabies.

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    A , Family Medicine, answered

    Scabies is caused by a tiny eight legged mite. The female burrows under the skin and lays eggs. The burrowing and laying eggs under the skin causes intense itching.

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    A , Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease), answered
    If you have very itchy bumps or blisters between your fingers, scabies may be the culprit. This skin infection is caused by tiny insects called mites. Female mites can tunnel into the skin and lay eggs. Your body reacts to this infestation by making your skin itch. Scabies most commonly produces itching between the fingers, the wrist, and between the toes, but it can also affect other parts of the body. Itching may be worse at night. In severe cases, affected skin can become thick and crusty. Your doctor will likely prescribe a medication called permethrin, which is applied to the skin to treat scabies.