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Infectious disease of the Mouth

Infectious disease of the Mouth



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Published by oxidalaj

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Published by: oxidalaj on Sep 05, 2008
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Infectious DiseasesOf the Oral Cavity,Respiratory Systemand GastroIntestinal(GI) Tract
Infectious diseases are caused by entry into thebody of infectious agents commonly called germs.
Alain Jon Candido
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Infectious Disease of the Mouth
Common cold
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Acute viral nasopharyngitis,
acute coryza
, usually known as the
common cold
, is a highlycontagious, viral infectious diseaseof the upper  respiratory system, primarily caused by picornaviruses (includingrhinoviruses
) or coronaviruses.Common symptoms aresore throat, runny nose, nasal congestion,sneezingandcough; sometimes accompanied by'pink eye', muscle aches,fatigue, malaise,headaches,muscle weakness, and/or loss of  appetite. Fever and extremeexhaustionare more usual ininfluenza. The symptoms of a cold usually resolve after about one week, but can last up to two. Symptoms may be more severe in infants andyoung children. Although the disease is generally mild and self-limiting, patients with common coldsoften seek professional medical help, useover-the-counter drugs,and may miss school or work days. The annual cumulative societal cost of the common cold in developed countries is considerable interms of money spent on remedies, and hours of work lost.The primary method to prevent infection is hand-washing to minimize person-to-person transmissionof the virus. There are noantiviraldrugs approved to treat or cure the infection. Most availablemedications are palliativeand treat symptoms only. Megadoses of vitamin C, preparations from echinacea, andzinc gluconatehave been studied as treatments for the common cold although none has  been approved by the Food and Drug Administration or European Medicines Agency.
Upper respiratory tract infections are the most common infectious diseases among adults and teens,who have two to four respiratory infections annually. Children may have six to ten colds a year (and upto 12 colds a year for school children). In the United States, the incidence of colds is higher in the falland winter, with most infections occurring between September and April. The seasonality may be dueto the start of the school year, or due to people spending more time indoors (thus in closer proximitywith each other) increasing the chance of transmission of the virus.
Common colds are most often caused by infection by one of the more than 100serotypes of rhinovirus, a type of   picornavirus. Other viruses causing colds are coronavirus, human parainfluenza viruses, human respiratory syncytial virus, adenoviruses, enteroviruses,or metapneumovirus.Due to the many different types of viruses, it is not possible to gain complete immunity to the common cold.
The common cold virus is transmitted between people by one of two mechanisms:
inaerosolform generated by coughing, sneezing.
from contact with the saliva or nasal secretions of an infected person, either directly or fromcontaminated surfaces.Symptoms are not necessary for viral shedding or transmission, as a percentage of asymptomaticsubjects exhibit viruses in nasal swabs.The virus enters the cellsof the lining of thenasopharynx (the area between the nose and throat), and rapidly multiplies. The major entry point is normally the nose, but can also be the eyes (in this casedrainage into the nasopharynx would occur through thenasolacrimal duct
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Infectious Disease of the Mouth
After initial infection, the viral replication cycle begins within 8 to 12 hours. Symptoms can occur shortly thereafter, and usually begin within 2 to 5 days after infection, although occasionally in as littleas 10 hours after infection. The first indication of a cold is often a sore or scratchy throat. Other  common symptoms are runny nose, congestion, sneezingandcough.These are sometimes accompanied bymuscle aches, fatigue,malaise, headache,weakness,or loss of appetite. Colds occasionally causefever and can sometimes lead to extreme exhaustion. (However, these symptomsare more usual in influenza,and can differentiate the two infections.) The symptoms of a cold usually resolve after about one week, but can last up to 14 days, with a cough lasting longer than other symptoms. Symptoms may be more severe in infants and young children, and may include fever andhives.
The best way to avoid a cold is to avoid close contact with existing sufferers; to wash hands thoroughlyand regularly; and to avoid touching the mouth and face. Anti-bacterial soaps have no effect on thecold virus; it is the mechanical action of hand washing with the soap that removes the virus particles.In 2002, theCenters for Disease Control and Prevention recommended alcohol-based hand gels as an effective method for reducing infectious viruses on the hands of health care workers. As with handwashing with soap and water, alcohol gels provide no residual protection from re-infection.The common cold is caused by a large variety of viruses, which mutate quite frequently duringreproduction, resulting in constantly changing virus strains. Thus, successfulimmunizationis highlyimprobable.
Exposure to cold weather
Although common colds are seasonal, with more occurring during winter, experiments so far havefailed to produce evidence that short-term exposure to cold weather or direct chilling increasessusceptibility to infection, implying that the seasonal variation is instead due to a change in behaviorssuch as increased time spent indoors at close proximity to others.With respect to the causation of cold-like
, researchers at the Common Cold Centre at theCardiff Universityconducted a study to "test the hypothesis that acute cooling of the feet causes theonset of common cold symptoms." The study measured the subjects' self-reported cold symptoms, and belief they had a cold, but not whether an actual respiratory infection developed. It found that asignificantly greater number of those subjects chilled developed cold symptoms 4 or 5 days after thechilling. It concludes that the onset of common cold
can be caused by acute chilling of thefeet. Some possible explanations were suggested for the symptoms, such as placebo, or constriction of  blood vessels, however "further studies are needed to determine the relationship of symptomgeneration to any respiratory infection."
As there is no medically proven and accepted medication directly targeting the causative agent, there isno cure for the common cold. Treatment is limited to symptomatic supportive options, maximizing thecomfort of the patient, and limiting complications and harmfulsequelae.The common cold is self-limiting, and the host'simmune systemeffectively deals with the infection.Within a few days, the body'shumoral immune response begins producing specificantibodies that can  prevent the virus from infecting cells. Additionally, as part of the cell-mediated immune response,leukocytesdestroy the virus through phagocytosisand destroy infected cells to prevent further viral replication. In healthy, immunocompetent individuals, the common cold resolves in seven days onaverage.

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