Welcome to the Foodborne Disease website. The sources of pathogens responsible for causing foodborne illnesses are pervasive. Food and its derivatives will invariably harbor a small concentration of pathogenic agents. When existing in minor proportions, these detrimental microorganisms do not give rise to any concerns. However, upon surpassing a particular threshold of contamination, they hold the capability to initiate sickness and potentially lead to fatal outcomes..

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

What is amebiasis

Amebiasis is invasion of human tissues by the protozoon Entamoeba histolytica. Infection begins when trophozoites of E. histolytica invade the colonic mucosa. The infection may remain localized and be minimal for years, or it may extend to the liver and other organs.

The parasite can live in the large intestine (colon) without causing damage to the intestine. In some cases, it invades the colon wall, causing colitis, acute dysentery, or long-term (chronic) diarrhea. The infection can also spread through the bloodstream to the liver. Often there are no symptoms, but sometimes it causes diarrhea (loose stool/poop), nausea (a feeling of sickness in the stomach), and weight loss. Signs & symptoms of amebiasis include: diarrhea (which may be bloody), stomach pains, cramping, nausea, loss of appetite, fever.

Amebiasis most commonly affects young to middle-aged adults. The disease is the third leading cause of death from parasitic disease worldwide (behind malaria and schistosomiasis), resulting in 40 to 100 thousand deaths annually.

Clinical syndromes associated with E. histolytica infection include non-invasive intestinal tract infection, intestinal amebiasis (amebic colitis), ameboma, and liver abscess. Amebic diarrhea without dysentery (i.e., presence of mucus and blood) is the most common disease manifestation of infection with E. histolytica and the mean duration of amebic diarrhea is three days.

Because the parasite usually enters the body through food, the infection is also called food poisoning. Although anyone can have this disease, it is most common in people who live in developing countries that have poor sanitary conditions.

Amebiasis is more common among people living in developing tropical countries with untreated water, poor sanitation, and limited access to toilets.

It also is found in people who have traveled to developing countries and in people who live in institutions that have poor sanitary conditions.

The parasite lives in the human intestine. Bowel movements can spread the parasite to soil, water, or food. Vegetables or fruit can be contaminated by contact with this soil or water.

A person gets amebiasis by putting anything in their mouth that has touched infected feces or by eating or drinking food or water contaminated with the parasite. The infection can spread when infected people do not dispose of their feces in a sanitary manner or do not wash their hands properly after going to the toilet. This is a daily occurrence among the poor in developing countries and is a threat to inhabitants of developed countries.

Food handlers may also transmit the infection by soiled hands. Mechanical transfer of protozoa occurs through flies and cockroach. It can also be spread sexually by oral-anal contact.\
What is amebiasis?

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