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Organisms & Diseases - Assignment Example

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This virus causes viral hemorrhagic fever (VHF) (W.H.O. 12). This fever is extremely severe in humans, whenever it attacks. This viral hemorrhagic fever is known to have up to 90% fatality rate. The fever is common in West Africa…
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Ebola Ebola is a viral disease caused by Ebola virus. This virus causes viral hemorrhagic fever (VHF) (W.H.O. 12). This fever is extremely severe in humans, whenever it attacks. This viral hemorrhagic fever is known to have up to 90% fatality rate. The fever is common in West Africa and central Africa. These places are near the tropical forests. The Ebola virus can be transmitted from wild animals to human beings. It can also be transmitted from human to human. Fruit bats (pteropodidae family) are the natural hosts of this deadly virus (W.H.O. 12). At the moment, there is no known vaccine or treatment for viral hemorrhagic fever and Ebola virus. This applies to both humans and animals.
The first case of Ebola occurred in 1976. It happened through two simultaneous outbreaks, in Yambuku, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Nzara, Sudan. In DRC, it occurred in a village near Ebola River. This became the name of the disease. There are five known species of the Ebola virus: Reston, Sudan, Bundibugyo, Ivory Coast and Zaire (W.H.O 12).
Ebola spreads among human population through close contact with secretions, blood, bodily fluids from infected animals and organs (W.H.O 12). Burial ceremonies that involve direct contact with the dead person play an important role in the spread of the disease. Infected semen can also transmit the disease for up to seven weeks after recovery. In Africa, infection spreads through handling of fruit bats, chimpanzees, monkeys and porcupines.
The prevalence rate of Ebola is only monitored in a few countries: Uganda, Gabon, Sudan and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Last year there was 1 case in Uganda having led to one death. In 2008, there were 44% fatalities out of 32 reported cases in DRC and in 2007 there were 25% fatalities out of the 149 reported cases in Uganda (W.H.O 12). The population increase and poverty have significantly contributed to the spread of this disease. This spread frequently occurs through retrogressive traditions like contact with deceased persons, irresponsible sexual behavior and poor sanitation. Most of the human-animal’s transmissions reflect the human wildlife conflict arising from population surge and detrimental policies of settlement and population control (W.H.O (a) 12).
Leishmaniasis
Leishmaniasis is a disease caused by protozoa of Leishmania genus. This is a parasitic protozoon. It happens when humans are bitten by phlebotomine sand flies. These flies breed in caves, forests, and brick houses. It is in these places that they infect human beings. The disease occurs in four types: diffuse coetaneous leishmaniasis, visceral leishmaniasis, mucocutaneous forms and in coetaneous forms. The coetaneous forms heal within a few months and leave scars (W.H.O (a) 12). Diffuse coetaneous type is difficult to treat while visceral leishmaniasis can lead to up to 100% fatality in 2 years. The disease is being limited through early detection, vector method, which is controlling the sand flies and education people on the disease. The sand flies are susceptible to insecticides (W.H.O (a) 12). Most of the cases of this disease heal without any treatment and leave the infected with immunity against the disease. Most of the available drugs are expensive, require a long period to be effective and some are ineffective at all. One of the drugs used is liposomal amphotericin B, (W.H.O (a) 12). This disease has been an epidemic in four continents. On these continents, it occurs in a total of 88 countries. More that 89% of this disease occur in Brazil, Sudan, Bangladesh and India. The environment that has been noted to trigger the spreading and transmission of the aforementioned forms of disease is mainly population increase. This happens when the population encroaches into new ecosystems like caves and forests. This is the natural habitat for the sand files.
Syphilis in Alabama: Compared to Ebola and Leishmanisis
Syphilis is a chronic disease, which is acute and infectious. It is caused by bacteria, (treponema pallidum bacterium). It spreads through direct contact (Medical News Today). The most common transmission method is sexual intercourse. Both Ebola and syphilis can be transmitted through sexual intercourse or direct contact. It has an incubation period of 12-30 days (W.H.O 12). The initial symptom is chancre, which is followed by a fever. It then grows into mucous patches and lymphadenopathy, which is secondary syphilis (Medical News Today). It is followed by functional abnormalities, which result from control nervous system lesions. This is the tertiary syphilis.
Other than sexual transmission, it can be spread through contact with infected sores, sharing of needles with an infected user, and when pregnant women pass the bacterium to the unborn (W.H.O (a) 12). This can lead to a still birth. The bacterial enters the body through infected sores during anal, oral or virginal sex or sharing of sex toys (Medical News Today). Alabama is among the states with the highest prevalence rates in syphilis (Medical News Today). In 2006, the city of Birmingham, which is the most populous in the state, had 238 cases reported (W.H.O (a) 12). This was three times more compared to the previous year. It was also the highest ranking in the country for rates per 100,000. The risk factors included exchanging sex for money and use of drugs (Medical News Today). This has a lot to do with irresponsible social behavior and poverty. It tends to be similar to some of the causes of the spread of Ebola (W.H.O 12).
The best way to control syphilis is through early detection. This is common to the three diseases, i.e. Ebola, Leishmaniasis and syphilis. The fatalities caused by syphilis cases are less than those of Ebola but are just like those of Leishmaniasis. If all the three diseases are allowed to advance to the final stages, they inevitably cause fatalities. Ebola has the least incubation period and leads to quick fatalities, unlike the rest. Ebola is the most dangerous decease of all discussed in this paper.
Works Cited
Medical News Today. STD Rates In Alabama among the Highest in Nation. Medical News Today. n.p., 16 Nov 2007. Web. 2 Sep 2012.
W.H.O. Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever. World Health Organization. n.p., Aug 2012. Web. 2 Sep 2012. .
W.H.O. (a). Leishmaniasis Disease Information. World Health Organization. n.p., Aug 2012. Web. 2 Sep 2012. . Read More
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