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  • Giardiasis

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    Giardiasis, popularly known as beaver fever, is a parasitic disease caused by Giardia lamblia. About 10% of those infected have no symptoms. When symptoms occur they may include diarrhea, abdominal pain, and weight loss. Vomiting, blood in the stool, and fever are less common. Symptoms usually begin 1 to 3 weeks after exposure and without treatment may last up to six weeks. Giardia usually spreads when Giardia lamblia cysts within feces contaminate food or water which is then eaten or drunk. It may also spread between people and from other animals. Risk factors include travel in the developing world, changing diapers, eating food without cooking it, and owning a dog. Cysts may survive for nearly three months in cold water. Diagnosis is via stool tests. Prevention is typically by improved hygiene. Those without symptoms do not usually need treatment. When symptoms are present treatment is typically with either tinidazole or metronidazole. People who are not already lactose intolerant may become so temporarily after an infection and therefore it is often recommended milk be avoided for a few weeks. Resistance to treatment may occur. Giardia is one of the most common parasitic human diseases globally. In 2013, there were about 280 million people worldwide with symptomatic giardiasis. Rates are as high as 7% in the developed world and 30% in the developing world. The World Health Organization classified it as a neglected disease.

  • Trichotillomania

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    Trichotillomania (TTM), also known as hair pulling disorder, is a mental disorder characterised by a long term urge that results in the pulling out of one's hair. This occurs to such a degree that hair loss can be seen. Efforts to stop pulling hair typically fail. Hair removal may occur anywhere; however, the head and around the eyes are most common. The hair pulling is to such a degree that it results in distress. The disorder may run in families. It occurs more commonly in those with obsessive compulsive disorder. Episodes of pulling may be triggered by anxiety. People usually acknowledge that they pull their hair. On examination broken hairs may be seen. Other conditions that may present similarly include body dysmorphic disorder, however in that condition people remove hair to try to improve what they see as a problem in how they look. Treatment is typically with cognitive behavioral therapy. The medication clomipramine may also be helpful. Trichotillomania is estimated to affect one to four percent of people. Trichotillomania most commonly begins in childhood or adolescence. Women are more commonly affected than men. The name was created by François Henri Hallopeau in 1889, from the Greek θρίξ/τριχ; thrix (meaning "hair"), along with τίλλειν; tíllein (meaning "to pull"), and μανία; mania (meaning "madness").

  • Protozoan infection

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    Protozoan infections are parasitic diseases caused by organisms formerly classified in the Kingdom Protozoa. They include organisms classified in Amoebozoa, Excavata, and Chromalveolata. Examples include Entamoeba histolytica, Plasmodium (some of which cause malaria), and Giardia lamblia. Trypanosoma brucei, transmitted by the tsetse fly and the cause of African sleeping sickness, is another example. The species traditionally collectively termed "protozoa" are not closely related to each other, and have only superficial similarities (eukaryotic, unicellular, motile, though with exceptions). The terms "protozoa" (and protist) are usually discouraged in the modern biosciences. However, this terminology is still encountered in medicine. This is partially because of the conservative character of medical classification, and partially due to the necessity of making identifications of organisms based upon appearances and not upon DNA. Protozoan infections in animals may be caused by organisms in the sub-class Coccidia (disease: Coccidiosis) and species in the genus Besnoitia (disease: Besnoitiosis).

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