Toxoplasmosis

Below you will find more information about Toxoplasmosis from Medigest. If you believe that you are suffering from any of the symptoms of Toxoplasmosis it is important that you obtain an accurate diagnosis from a medical professional to ensure that you obtain the correct medication or treatment for your condition. There are medical conditions that carry similar symptoms associated with Toxoplasmosis and therefore the information provided by Medigest is offered as a guideline only and should never be used in preference to seeking professional medical advice. The information relating to Toxoplasmosis comes from a third party source and Medigest will not be held liable for any inaccuracies relating to the information shown.

Definition

A parasitic disease caused by the protozoan Toxoplasma gondii, Toxoplasmosis infects most warm-blooded animals, including humans. This primary host of the disease however is the felid (cat) family. It is estimated that up to one third of the world's population carries a Toxoplasma infection.

Diagnosis

Serological tests, polymerase chain reaction (PCR), histological demonstration of the parasite and/or its antigens, or isolation of the organism may establish the diagnosis of Toxoplasmosis. Analysis of infected tissue as well as blood tests are also conducted to diagnose the disease.

Treatment

No treatment is required among those without symptoms. Treating the infection may include utilizing medications such as antimalarial drugs and antibiotics. If AIDS patients contract the disease, treatment should be continued for as long as their immune system is weak to prevent the disease from reactivating.

Symptoms and Signs

Thought most primary infections produce no symptoms; the disease can affect the brain, lung, heart, eyes, or liver. Those with healthy immune systems may manifest enlarged lymph nodes in the head and neck, headache, mild illness with fever, sore throat, and muscle pain. Confusion, fever, headache, retinal inflammation causing blurred vision, and seizures may be found among immunosuppressed persons.

Causes

Eating infected meat or ingesting feces of a cat that has recently been infected may cause the disease among animals. Transmission from mother to fetus also causes the disease.

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