What is a specialty of infectious diseases?
Infectious diseases are a medical specialty, part of the specialty of internal medicine. It deals with the prediction and treatment of diseases caused by microorganisms - bacteria, viruses, fungi. The infectious organism uses the body resources of the host for reproduction.
The infectious agent (also called the pathogen) interferes with the host's normal function and can cause chronic wounds, necrosis, organ loss due to infection and death. The surrogate body responds to infection in the form of inflammation. Infectious pathogens can include bacteria, worms, parasites such as fleas, ticks, mites, lice, fungi, viruses, prions, and plants.
What is an infectious disease specialist?
An infectious disease specialist is a medical doctor specialized in treating infectious diseases. Specialists in infectious diseases conduct prevention, diagnosis, therapy, and rehabilitation of contagious disease patients.
Infectious disease specialists use various diagnostic tests to determine the pathogen that is causing the infection. Tests include Gram stain, blood cultures, serological tests, genotyping, and polymerase chain reaction. Infectious disease specialists use various antimicrobial agents to aid in the treatment of infections. The type of antimicrobial depends on the organism that is causing the infection. Antibiotics are used to treat bacterial infections; antiviral drugs treat viral infections, and antifungals treat fungal infections.
What are the main types of conditions that infectologists treat?
• chickenpox, measles, mumps, influenza, scarlet fever, diphtheria, pertussis, meningococcal infection, tuberculosis, rubella, smallpox in monkeys, legionellosis
• polio, viral hepatitis A, rotavirus gastroenteritis, cholera, typhoid fever, shigellosis, choleenteritis, salmonellosis, brucellosis, ornithosis, leptospirosis, campylobacteriosis, pseudotuberculosis, yersiniosis, botulism
• typhus, Brill-Zinser disease, relapsing typhus, Volyn fever, malaria, visceral leishmaniasis, viral encephalitis, viral hemorrhagic fever, viral fever, Lyme disease, plague, tularemia, Q fever, Marseille fever, American goat lie
• trachoma, infectious dermatoses, bilharziasis, hookworms, rabies, anthrax, foot-and-mouth disease, foot-and-mouth disease, sodoku, benign lymphoreticulosis, melioidosis, tetanus, gas gangrene, blastomycosis, aspergillosis, coccidioidomycosis
• syphilis, gonococcus, venereal lymphogranuloma, trichomoniasis, HHV1 and HHV2 infections, urogenital chlamydia, urogenital mycoplasmosis, scabies
• viral hepatitis B, C, D, G, HIV infection, listeriosis, toxoplasmosis
• slow infections, Helicobacter pylori, Kawasaki disease