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Many microbial infections are described as opportunistic. What do you understand by this termGive a bacterial, parasitic - Essay Example

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Infectious Disease and Processes Institution Instructor Date Infectious Disease and Processes Opportunistic Infections Generally, the word opportunistic refers to a situation where something/someone takes an immediate unethical advantage of a particular circumstance in order to achieve specific benefits…
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Many microbial infections are described as opportunistic. What do you understand by this termGive a bacterial, parasitic
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Download file to see previous pages At this time, the opportunistic organisms get an opportunity to spread as well as grow fast, hence, causing severe illness. Though such infections can be seen in a healthy person, their growth and spread is highly hindered. In cases of opportunistic infections, a chance is created for nonpathogenic microorganisms to become pathogenic and very harmful (Mitnick et al, 2003, p. 119). These infections mostly manifest themselves in people already infected with viruses like HIV, for instance Tuberculosis (TB). Tuberculosis (TB) as an Opportunistic Infection Viral Example Tuberculosis is an air-borne disease that usually affects the respiratory system (lungs) and is caused by Mycobacterium Tuberculosis bacteria (Currie et al, 2003, p. 2501). It can also affect other body parts like the spine and the kidneys. It is a serious infection that kills a large percentage of people worldwide, especially if not effectively treated. Approximately 2 billion people of the world’s population give positive results to TB tests annually, of which about 3 million end up dying. TB infections had almost become extinct in developed countries before the emergence of HIV epidemic. With the onset of the HIV virus, TB infections were found to be very rampant and severe in people affected with the virus (Jones et al, 2000, p. 1031). This is simply because the HIV virus makes the body’s immune system weak, thus, promoting the growth and spread of the TB bacteria. The close link between HIV and TB was stressed and emphasized during a conference concerned with retroviruses as well as opportunistic infections (CROI) (Mitnick et al, 2003, p. 128). At the conference, a report was release analyzing the recent emergence of TB bacteria which is drug resistant. The World Health Organization (WHO) tried to establish the relationship between this drug-resistant bacteria and the HIV virus. A study was carried out in South Africa where it found out that XDR TB was resistant to a number of drugs meant to treat it, including isoniazid. This was the new case which was discovered however since then beyond 300 new cases have been reported (Tufariello, Chan & Flynn, 2003, p. 578). Nevertheless, it was discovered that people who exhibited such cases positively tested for the HIV virus. The micro-organism that usually causes TB is transmitted from one person to another through air (CDC, 2000, p. 185). These micro-organisms can spread as a result of a cough or sometimes an open sneeze. It is not in all cases that a person can get infected with TB by just a single sneeze or a cough. However, if you are frequently exposed to such sneezes and coughs, the likelihood is very high. This can occur in cases where you live or mostly work with a TB infected individual. Moreover, you can easily get TB in places that are ventilated poorly or crowded (Espinal et al, 2000, p. 275). By so saying, it does not mean that one can get infected through sharing utensils or physically contacting a person who has it. There are mainly two types of infections classified as TB which are differentiated using their different ways of manifestations (Lonnroth et al, 2009, p. 2240). The first one is referred to as latent and this one has no symptoms thus remains in your body in an inactive form. The second one is called active which mostly affects people whose immune system is impaired. In this case, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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