Chart: 6 zoonoses you should know -- Toxoplasmosis

Chart: 6 zoonoses you should know -- Toxoplasmosis

source-image
Mar 12, 2010
veterinary_hookworm veterinary_tapeworm veterinary_roundworm veterinary_toxoplasmosis veterinary_cryptosporidiosis veterinary_lyme_disease

Common disease name

Toxoplasmosis
(Toxoplasmosis involves a protozoon parasite that infects virtually all warm-blooded vertebrates.)


Scientific name

Toxoplasma gondii


Method of infection

Cats: Ingestion of oocysts in feces, ingestion of tissues of intermediate host (e.g. rodents)

People: Ingestion of uncooked meat, exposure to infected cat feces (food, water, soil); usually not from shedding cat. Oocysts must sporulate in the environment before becoming infective.


Signs

Cats: Rarely causes clinical signs, but may cause lymphadenitis, encephalitis, coughing, dyspnea, weight loss, and lethargy

People: Rarely causes clinical signs, but may cause flu-like symptoms; in people with deficient immune responses it can lead to death, congenital malformation, or mental retardation


Treatment

There are no approved treatments, but clindamycin hydrochloride, pyrimethamine and a sulfonamide, and a trimethoprim-sulfonamide combination have been used with success.


People most at risk

Everyone is at risk, but especially immunosuppressed people, including pregnant women, fetuses, and children


Prevention

  • Keep cats indoors to prevent ingestion of infected animals and feces.
  • Avoid feeding uncooked meats or viscera to cats.
  • Remove feces from litter box daily.
  • Wash litter boxes with scalding water or steam.
  • Allow only immunocompetent, nonpregnant people to clean litter boxes.
  • Wash hands thoroughly after exposure to soil, sand, raw meats, and unwashed vegetables.
  • Wear gloves when gardening.
  • Cover children's sandboxes when not in use.

ADVERTISEMENT

Photo galleries

Cat behaviors, deciphered

FIRSTLINE - Aug 11, 2016

By Portia Stewart, Editor, Team Channel Director

A completely unscientific look at catitudes from a casual observer and cat fanciest.

10 reasons to love veterinary medicine

DVM360 MAGAZINE - Aug 01, 2016

By dvm360.com staff

Feeling cynical? Find out why you've got one of the best jobs in the world.

Practice management hacks: Advice to a new manager on how to manage staff and be a successful boss

VETERINARY ECONOMICS - Jul 14, 2016

By dvm360.com staff

VHMA members spill their best-kept secrets for successful staff management.