Topics: Pulmonology, Pneumonia, Medicine Pages: 2 (508 words) Published: October 22, 2008

There are many different types of disease that affect different systems of the body. Most of them can be treated and cured with antibiotics. One disease that affect the respiratory system is histoplasmosis. This disease is caused by inhaling spores of a fungus called Histoplasma capsulatum. Even though diseases can be dangerous this one is not contagious because it can not be transmitted from an infected person or animal.

Histoplasmosis affect a person’s lungs. The symptoms vary greatly because in mild cases people do not need to seek medical help. Usually after exposure, symptoms occur 3 to 17 days after. Like most disease it can occur as flu-like respiratory illness. For instance, fever, chest pain, dry or nonproductive cough, headache, lost of appetite, shortness of breath, joint and muscle pains, chills, and hoarseness. When a chest x-ray is taken this disease shows up as a form or pneumonia. Chronic lung disease resembles tuberculosis and can worsen. The most severe cases of histoplasmosis would spread to other organs in the body.

Since this disease is not contagious people that contracts this is usually working where there are H. capusulatum in which the spores are inhaled. The severity of the sickness depends on the amount of spores that are inhaled. What also affects the severity is age such as children and elders. Illnesses such as diabetes, chronic lung disease, AIDS, or cancer increases the risk for developing histoplasmosis.

Histoplasmosis can be tested from the skin of an infected person, but that is not as effective. Usually the substance itself should be tested. Mild cases of histoplasmosis are usually resolved without treatment. In severe cases, antibiotics that are antifungal are needed. If medical treatment is not sought in severe cases death may occur.

The spores of histoplasmosis can be found in the soil throughout the world. Where the fungus is more prevalent is in the United States, in...
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