Geographic variation in rates of disease essay

Infectious Diseases Worksheet

Select two infectious diseases that have gained prominence in the United States in the past five years and complete the worksheet. Include references.

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Disease description: Anthrax

Cause: Bacteria found in spores, food and animals

Mode of transmission: Direct contact, consumption, inhalation

Symptoms:fever, shivers & shakes, flu-like symptoms, pneumonia

Descriptive epidemiologic data (Person, place, or time): its a bacteria that is ingested or comes in contact with the human or animal

Demographic data on affected populations:anthrax is normally lethal although it can be addressed early on with some degree of effectiveness. It has a 97% morbidity rate if not caught in time.

Disease frequency: Anthrax has been around for centuries and outbreaks occur often throughout the world.

c. Geographic variation in rates of disease: although the majority of the time outbreaks happen in third world countries more often than not

d. Reasons for place variation: third world countries often do not have the medical facilities and resources that other countries do, and are more likely to come in contact with the bacteria

e. Cyclic fluctuations: there seems to be an ebb and flow to the disease, as once an outbreak occurs resources are rushed to the area, only to have the disease rear its ugly head in other areas.

f. Time trends: once infected, if the disease is not addressed right away, death will result the majority of the time within a few days.

g. Cohort effects: anthrax is lethal due to its virulence and components, once it is introduced into the system, the disease produces a lethal toxin that causes death.

h. Clustering: because the disease is transmitable through direct contact and ingestion, outbreaks occur where the bacteria can bide its time.

3. How data was used to evaluate disease at a population level: Outbreaks occur and are usually addressed in a geographical manner, tracked through data that shows the origin and how it is transmitted.

4. Recommendations for health care planning in terms of resources for prevention and care: recommendations include ongoing research to develop more effective antibiotics, and to find a cure. An improved tracking and diagnosis system that can be effectively and efficiently disseminated to poorer countries should also be highly considered.

Infectious Diseases Worksheet

Select two infectious diseases that have gained prominence in the United States in the past five years and complete the worksheet. Include references.

1. Disease description: staphylococcus

a. Cause: Bacteria

b. Mode of transmission: Direct contact

c. Symptoms: depends on the type of staph, but usually includes boils or furuncles, low blood pressure, fevers or chills and can result in swollen areas of the body that are red and irritated.

2. Descriptive epidemiologic data (Person, place, or time): staphylococcus is constantly present and can be contacted through touch or picking up infected environments. The bacteria can live for a days, weeks or months depending on the environment.

a. Demographic data on affected populations: staphylococcus is worldwide and surprisingly enough, in recent years, has been more often found in hospital populations and in other medical facilities and environments

b. Disease frequency: staphylococcus is an ongoing problem throughout the world

c. Geographic variation in rates of disease: very little variation of the incidence of infection since it is such a prevalent and worldwide disease

d. Reasons for place variation: there is little variation

e. Cyclic fluctuations:this is an ongoing battle against a bacteria that has developed resistance to treatments and antibiotics. The only cyclic fluctuations occur when a new antibiotic is introduced to combat the bacteria. However, MRSA is just one example of the staph bacteria developing resistance to an antibiotic treatment.

f. Time trends: once the diagnosis is made, treatments can commence with strong antibiotics and a continued regimen of those antibiotics through a 10-day up to 6-week schedule of daily dosage can address the bacteria. Often times the disease will seem to have been eradicated from the patient, only to have it re-occur again and again.

g. Cohort effects: staphylococcus infections often times lead to much more serious problems such as impetigo, cellulitis, sepsis and heart failure.

h. Clustering: staphylococcus can be found on approximately 30% of the population and more prevalently in children, pregnant woman, and in older-aged woman as well.

3. How data was used to evaluate disease at a population level: Staphylococcus is continually addressed as it is an ongoing problem and is constantly present in approximately 30% of the human race.

4. Recommendations for health care planning in terms of resources for prevention and care: Special care and attention should take place when in a hospital environment as it has been shown that nearly 35% of all hospital personnel carry staph. Keeping the environment clean and sterile is very important, therefore it is recommended that hand washing (especially in hospitals) take place regularly, and that any infected wounds be covered with clean bandages and changed routinely.

Women on menstrual cycles should change tampons in a regular and consistent manner. Wearing protective gear (again in hospitals) should be done in areas of infected patients.

Works Cited

Olsen, R.; Long, S.W.; Musser, J.M.; (2012) Bacterial genomics in infectious disease and the clinical pathology laboratory, Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, Vol. 136, Issue 11, pp. 1414-1422

Price, E.P.; Seymour, M.L.; Sarovich, D.S.; Latham, J.; Wolen, S.R.; Mason, J.; Vincent, G.; Drees, K.P.; Beckstrom-Sternberg, S.M.; Phillippy, A.M.; Koren, S.; Okinaka, R.T.; Wai-Kwan, C.; Schupp, J.M.; Wagner, D.M.; Vipond, R.; Foster, J.T.; Bergman, N.H.; Burans, J.; Pearson, T.; (2012) Molecular epidemiologic investigation of an anthrax outbreak among heroin users, Europe, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Vol. 18, Issue 8, pp. 1307-1313

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