Emerging Infectious Diseases and their Diagnosis


Emerging Infectious Diseases and their Diagnosis


Infectious diseases are the world’s greatest killers that present one of the most significant health and security challenges facing the global community. In our daily life we are surrounded by a wealth of microorganisms, the majority of which are non-harmful, but some are severely harmful for the health. Infectious diseases are among the world’s leading causes of death, and scientists from every nation perform research, share information, build laboratory capacity in poorer nations and create global surveillance networks to help prevent and control their spread.

Emerging infectious diseases are diseases that have not occurred in humans before; have occurred previously but affected only small numbers of people in isolated places or have occurred throughout human history but have only recently been recognized as distinct diseases due to an infectious agent (example- gastric ulcers). Re-emerging infectious diseases are diseases that once were major health problems globally or in a particular country, and then declined dramatically, but are again becoming health problems for a significant proportion of the population (example- malaria and tuberculosis).

Emerging diseases can be new infections that arise from changes in existing organisms or known infections that spread to new geographic areas or populations. Emerging infectious diseases (EIDs) are a significant burden on global economies and public health. Their emergence is thought to be driven largely by socio-economic, environmental and ecological factors, but no comparative study has explicitly analysed these linkages to understand global temporal and spatial patterns of EIDs.

Factors responsible for EIDs as identified by Board on Global Health (BGH) and the Institute of Medicine (IOM), include: Microbial adaptation and change, Human Demographics and Behaviour, International Travel and Commerce, Economic Development and Land Use, Technology and Industry, Breakdown of public health measures, Human susceptibility to infection, Climate and weather, Changing ecosystems etc.

Diagnosis of Infectious disease: Doctors suspect an infection based on the person's symptoms, physical examination results, and risk factors. First, doctors confirm that the person has an infection rather than another type of illness. For example, a person with a cough and difficulty breathing may have pneumonia (a lung infection). However, the person may instead have asthma or heart failure, which are not caused by infection. In such a person, a chest x-ray can help doctors distinguish pneumonia from the other possible disorders. Once it is confirmed that the person has an infection, they usually need to know which specific microorganism is causing the infection. Many different microorganisms can cause a given infection. For example, pneumonia can be caused by viruses, bacteria or rarely, fungi. The treatment is different for each microorganism.

Media Contact:
Allison Grey
Journal Manager
Journal of Infectious Diseases and Diagnosis
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Email: jidd@microbialjournals.com
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