Toxoplasmosis: Symptoms, Causes and How to Treat Toxoplasmosis

RICHARD G 10:56:00 PM

Symptoms, Causes and How to Treat Toxoplasmosis. Toxoplasmosis is an infection in humans inflicted by parasitic protozoa (one-cell organisms) Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii).

Toxoplasmosis Treatment. These parasites are often found in cats or meat impurities that are immature. T. gondii parasitic infections in healthy people generally do not harm, because the immune system can control this parasitic infection.
Symptoms, Causes and How to Treat Toxoplasmosis
However, serious medical treatment should be taken if the infection attacks a person with a low immune system or expectant mother, in order to avoid severe complications.

Toxoplasmosis is a disease in humans and hot-blooded animals caused by Toxoplasma gondii, protozoa acting as a parasite.

Toxoplasmosis is zoonotic (an infectious disease of animals to humans). The transmission occurs as a result of swallowing infected meats, contact with a cat stool, or vertically from the mother to the fetus it contains.

Although Toxoplasmosis is identical to cats, consuming uncooked infected meat is a source of major transmission in humans in many countries.

Toxoplasmosis is distributed from animals to humans, not among human beings, except in pregnant women who can spread this infection in the country.

Consequently, the fetus undergoes slow developments. Even in cases of heavier infections, miscarriage or fetal death can occur in the womb.

After the occurrence of Toxoplasmosis, T. gondii parasites can persist in the body in inactive conditions, thereby giving lifelong immunity to this parasitic infection.

But when the immune system is weakened due to a certain disease or drug consumption, T. gondii infection can be active again and trigger more severe complications.

Symptoms of Toxoplasmosis
Toxoplasmosis symptoms. When T. gondii attacks A healthy person, symptoms may not appear and the sufferer can recover completely.

In other cases, however, symptoms may occur a few weeks or the symptoms are usually mild and are similar to flu symptoms, namely fever, muscle aches, fatigue, sore throat, and swelling of the lymph glands. These symptoms can improve within 6 weeks.

T. gondii infections in infants and children are generally transmitted from the mother during pregnancy.

More serious symptoms can be experienced by the fetus infected by this parasite in the early trimester of pregnancy, in the form of premature birth, miscarriage, or the death of the fetus in the womb.

Meanwhile, infants born with T. gondii (congenital Toxoplasmosis) will show symptoms, such as:
  • Yellowish-colored skin.
  • Inflammation of the corions (Chrorionitis) or infection in the back of the eyeball and retina.
  • Enlarged organs of the liver and spleen.
  • Skin rash or skin easy bruising.
  • Seizures.
  • The buildup of brain fluids in the head, so that the head becomes large (hydrocephalus).
  • The head appears smaller (microcephaly).
  • Intellectual impairment or mental retardation.
  • Loss of hearing.
  • Anemia.
These symptoms can arise when a baby is born, or recently seen a few months or several years later.
While in patients with immune disorders, symptoms of toxoplasmosis infections are characterized by:
  • Difficulty in speech, visual impairment, hearing loss, dizziness, seemingly confused, convulsions, up to coma, if toxoplasmosis attacks the brain.
  • Rash, fever, shivering, limp, and shortness of breath, if the toxoplasmosis spreads throughout the body.
Causes of Toxoplasmosis
The cause of toxoplasmosis is Toxoplasma gondii, one-cell organisms that live as parasites.

Toxoplasma comes from the ancient Greek tóxon which means concave and plásma which means form so that toxoplasma is a concave organism or resembles a crescent moon.

The organism was first discovered in 1908 in the spleen and the heart of a rounder called Gundi (Ctenodactylus Gundi) in Africa. Since then, various studies have found this parasitic presence in various animals.

Toxoplasma gondii is a single-cell parasitic organism (protozoa) that can spread infections in animals and humans.

Although these parasites can grow in the tissues of many animals, there are more in the body of cats.

These parasites lay eggs in the lining of the cat intestine and can come out with the dirt of the animal.

The spread of T. gondii infection in humans occurs by:
  • Exposed to cat droppings containing T. gondii parasites.
  • Consume food or beverages contaminated with T. gondii parasites, including raw meats containing these parasites.
  • Through the placenta of pregnant women, who spread infections in the fetus.
  • Through blood transfusions or organ transplants from this parasitic donor infected.
There are some conditions that can increase the risk of toxoplasmosis into serious health disorders, namely:
  • Pregnant.
  • Taking corticosteroid or immunosuppressive drugs long term.
  • Suffers H*V/A*DS.
  • Undergoing chemotherapy.
How to transmit Toxoplasmosis
Animals and humans can be infected in two ways, which are congenital and acquisition.

Congenital toxoplasmosis occurs when the fetus in the uterus is infected from the mother or its parent through the placenta, while the acquisition toxoplasmosis occurs when the host ingestion an infectious oosista or consume tissue that contains bradyzoite or sista tissues.

Both can be acute and then become latent.

Cats are animals that play an important role in the spread of toxoplasmosis because they are the definitive hosts that propagate the oosista into the environment.

However, cats that suffer from toxoplasmosis generally do not exhibit specific and subclinical signs.

The infections caused by the oosista of the cat are less effective in the role of toxoplasmosis in comparison with the consumption of meat that contains bradyzoite.

Humans can be infected by swallowing an infectious oosista scattered in water and soil, bradyzoite in poorly cooked meats, through blood transfusions, transplants, laboratory accidents, or congenital.

Transmission in humans most often occurs through the consumption of raw or undercooked meats, especially lamb and pork.

Another common way of transmission is through raw vegetables that are not washed before. These vegetables are contaminated with oosista derived from cat stools.

The infective Oosista in the environment can also pollute water which can be a source of transmission if taken by humans or other animals.

Oosista is inconsequential when it is first issued with cat feces.

It took a few days to sporulate so that it could be inquisitive so that direct contact with cats is suspected to not be a risk factor for the transmission of Toxoplasmosis.

The way of maintenance of cats in the house so as not to eat Rodentia and birds, do not feed cats with raw meats, as well as control intermediate host populations such as Rodensia can be done to reduce the risk of cats exposed T. gondii.

How to prevent Toxoplasmosis
There are several things that can be done to reduce the risk of exposure to toxoplasmosis, namely:
  • Use gloves while gardening or holding the ground.
  • Avoid consuming raw or half-cooked meats.
  • Wash hands before and after holding food.
  • Wash all kitchen utensils cleanly after cooking raw meat.
  • Always wash fruits and vegetables before consumption.
  • Avoid drinking non-pasteurized goat milk or dairy products.
  • For those who keep cats, they should maintain the health of this animal, and use gloves while cleaning the place of his litter. Avoid maintaining stray cats, because susceptible to infected parasites T. gondii.
  • Give the cat a dry or canned food rather than raw meat.
  • Cover the sandbox of children's playground so that cats are not used to remove dirt.

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