A pathogen is a biological agent, or germ, that causes disease to its host by interrupting normal body processes. Bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites are all common types of pathogens that can cause pathogenic, or infectious, diseases. These pathogens can be found in the air, soil and water, and infection can occur as a result of touching, eating or drinking something that is infected with a germ. Pathogenic diseases are the leading cause of death worldwide, according to Medline Plus 3.
If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
Trichinellosis, also called trichinosis, is an infection caused by eating raw or undercooked meat that is infected with the larvae of the worm Trichinella. Trichinella is most often found in wild animals that eat meat, but may also be found in domestic pigs, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 1. Initial symptoms of trichinellosis include:
- abdominal pain
Severe cases of trichinellosis cause heart problems, breathing difficulties and an inability to control muscle movement 1. These severe cases can result in death. Trichinellosis is treated with a series of medications.
- Trichinellosis, also called trichinosis, is an infection caused by eating raw or undercooked meat that is infected with the larvae of the worm Trichinella.
- Trichinella is most often found in wild animals that eat meat, but may also be found in domestic pigs, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 1.
Protozoan Diseases List
Cellulitis is a skin infection caused by the bacteria streptococcus or staphylococcus 2. Most commonly, the bacteria enter the body through a wound or open area on the skin, but can also gain access to the body through an insect bite. Cellulitis can occur anywhere on the body, but is most often seen on the lower leg, according to Mayo Clinic 2. Symptoms of cellulitis include:
- warm skin
- fever 2
Lyme disease is an inflammatory disease caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi 3. Borrelia burgdorferi is carried by certain types of ticks that obtain the bacteria through biting infected mice or deer. Humans acquire Lyme disease when they are bitten by an infected tick 3. New cases of Lyme disease are most often seen in late spring, summer and early fall when ticks are most abundant, according to Medline Plus 3. The disease is usually detected through the presence of a bull's-eye shaped rash at the infection site. Initial symptoms of Lyme disease include chills, fever, headache, muscle pain and weariness 3. As the disease progresses, itching, joint inflammation, a stiff neck and abnormal behavior may occur. Antibiotics are used to treat Lyme disease 3. In cases where joint inflammation and stiffness is severe, anti-inflammatory medications may be prescribed.
Protozoan Diseases List
How to Treat an Infected Bug Bite
Diseases with Mono Like Symptoms
Diseases Causing Numbness to the Legs
Common Human Parasites
Diseases From Pork That Pass to Humans
Symptoms of Roundworms in People
What Are the Causes of Blister Skin Rash?
Types of Endemic Diseases
Flu-Like Symptoms After a Tick Bite
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Trichinellosis
- Mayo Clinic: Cellulitis
- Medline Plus: Lyme Disease
- Skar GL, Simonsen KA. Lyme Disease. [Updated 2018 Oct 27]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2019 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK431066/
- InformedHealth.org [Internet]. Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG); 2006-. Tick bites: Lyme disease. 2012 Apr 3 [Updated 2019 Apr 25].Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279242/
- Skar GL, Simonsen KA. Lyme Disease. [Updated 2018 Oct 27]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2019 Jan-.
- van der Heijden A, Mulder BC, Poortvliet PM, van Vliet AJH. Social-cognitive determinants of the tick check: a cross-sectional study on self-protective behavior in combatting Lyme disease. BMC Public Health. 2017;17(1):900. Published 2017 Nov 25. doi:10.1186/s12889-017-4908-1
- Nadelman RB. Erythema migrans. Infect Dis Clin North Am. 2015;29(2):211-39.
- InformedHealth.org [Internet]. Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG); 2006-. Tick bites: Lyme disease. 2012 Apr 3 [Updated 2019 Apr 25].
- Cook MJ. Lyme borreliosis: a review of data on transmission time after tick attachment. Int J Gen Med. 2014;8:1–8. Published 2014 Dec 19. doi:10.2147/IJGM.S73791
- Bratton RL, Whiteside JW, Hovan MJ, Engle RL, Edwards FD. Diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease. Mayo Clin Proc. 2008;83(5):566-71.
- Biesiada G, Czepiel J, Leśniak MR, Garlicki A, Mach T. Lyme disease: review. Arch Med Sci. 2012;8(6):978–982. doi:10.5114/aoms.2012.30948
- Djukic M, Schmidt-Samoa C, Lange P, et al. Cerebrospinal fluid findings in adults with acute Lyme neuroborreliosis. J Neurol. 2012;259(4):630–636. doi:10.1007/s00415-011-6221-8
- Marques AR. Laboratory diagnosis of Lyme disease: advances and challenges. Infect Dis Clin North Am. 2015;29(2):295–307. doi:10.1016/j.idc.2015.02.005
- Wormser GP, Molins CR, Levin A, et al. Evaluation of a sequential enzyme immunoassay testing algorithm for Lyme disease demonstrates lack of test independence but high diagnostic specificity. Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis. 2018;91(3):217–219. doi:10.1016/j.diagmicrobio.2018.02.006
- Waddell LA, Greig J, Mascarenhas M, Harding S, Lindsay R, Ogden N. The Accuracy of Diagnostic Tests for Lyme Disease in Humans, A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of North American Research. PLoS One. 2016;11(12):e0168613. Published 2016 Dec 21. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0168613
- Hofhuis A, van de Kassteele J, Sprong H, et al. Predicting the risk of Lyme borreliosis after a tick bite, using a structural equation model. PLoS One. 2017;12(7):e0181807. Published 2017 Jul 24. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0181807
- Thomm AM, Schotthoefer AM, Dupuis AP, et al. Development and Validation of a Serologic Test Panel for Detection of Powassan Virus Infection in U.S. Patients Residing in Regions Where Lyme Disease Is Endemic. mSphere. 2018;3(1)
- Wills MKB, Kirby AM, Lloyd VK. Detecting the Lyme Disease Spirochete, Borrelia Burgdorferi, in Ticks Using Nested PCR. J Vis Exp. 2018;(132):56471. Published 2018 Feb 4. doi:10.3791/56471
- Jabbari N, Glusman G, Joesch-Cohen LM, et al. Whole genome sequence and comparative analysis of Borrelia burgdorferi MM1. PLoS One. 2018;13(6):e0198135. Published 2018 Jun 11. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0198135
- Lymedisease.org About Lyme Disease. 2018
- Koester TM, Meece JK, Fritsche TR, Frost HM. Infectious Mononucleosis and Lyme Disease as Confounding Diagnoses: A Report of 2 Cases. Clin Med Res. 2018;16(3-4):66–68. doi:10.3121/cmr.2018.1419
- Arvikar SL, Crowley JT, Sulka KB, Steere AC. Autoimmune Arthritides, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Psoriatic Arthritis, or Peripheral Spondyloarthritis Following Lyme Disease. Arthritis Rheumatol. 2017;69(1):194–202. doi:10.1002/art.39866
- Patrick DM, Miller RR, Gardy JL, et al. Lyme Disease Diagnosed by Alternative Methods: A Phenotype Similar to That of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Clin Infect Dis. 2015;61(7):1084-91.
- Batinac T, Petranovic D, Zamolo G, Petranovic D, Ruzic A. Lyme borreliosis and multiple sclerosis are associated with primary effusion lymphoma. Med Hypotheses. 2007;69(1):117-9.
- Donta ST. Issues in the diagnosis and treatment of lyme disease. Open Neurol J. 2012;6:140–145. doi:10.2174/1874205X01206010140
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Signs and Symptoms of Untreated Lyme Disease. cdc.gov August 15, 2019
- Touradji P, Aucott JN, Yang T, Rebman AW, Bechtold KT. Cognitive Decline in Post-treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome. Arch Clin Neuropsychol. 2019;34(4):455-465.
- Ścieszka J, Dąbek J, Cieślik P. Post-Lyme disease syndrome. Reumatologia. 2015;53(1):46–48. doi:10.5114/reum.2015.50557
- Blaser M. Antibiotic Overuse: Stop the Killing of Beneficial Bacteria. Nature. August 25, 2011;476:393-394. doi:10.1038/476393a.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Two-Step Laboratory Testing Process. Updated March 26, 2015.
- National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Chronic Lyme Disease. National Institutes of Health. Updated September 3, 2015.
Lindsay Boyers has a Bachelor of Science in nutrition from Framingham State College and a certificate in holistic nutrition from the American College of Healthcare Sciences. She is also a licensed aesthetician with advanced training in skincare and makeup. She plans to continue on with her education, complete a master's degree program in nutrition and, ultimately, become a registered dietitian.