Here is a term paper on ‘Human Diseases’. Find paragraphs, long and short term papers on ‘Human Diseases’ especially written for school and college students.
Term Paper on Human Diseases
Term Paper Contents:
- Term Paper on Typhoid
- Term Paper on Tuberculosis
- Term Paper on Cholera
- Term Paper on Diarrhoea
- Term Paper on Pneumonia
- Term Paper on Common Cold
- Term Paper on Influenza
- Term Paper on Amoebiasis
- Term Paper on Ascariasis
- Term Paper on Filaria
- Term Paper on Ringworm Infection
Human beings are most vulnerable to a number of illnesses than any other living organism. But the human body is strong enough to either fight off or live with most of them. Sometimes however, the body succumbs to a feeling of discomfort due to a number of reasons.
This feeling of discomfort is referred to as ‘disease’. The word ‘disease’ literally means ‘dis-ease’ which means without ease or comfort. It refers to the discomfort when the body or parts of the body do not behave or function normally.
Disease is a pathological condition of a part, organ, or system of an organism and is characterised by an identifiable group of signs or symptoms. It may result due to various reasons, such as infection, genetic defect or environmental stress. It is an abnormal condition of the body or the mind and causes discomfort and distress to the person afflicted.
Some diseases are acute and produce severe symptoms that terminate after a short period of time, while some are chronic as in arthritis that lasts for a long time. There are still others, which are recurrent and return periodically as in malaria.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 1. Typhoid:
Typhoid is an intestinal disorder. It is a common infectious disease affecting mostly individuals from about 1-15 years of age. Salmonella typhi is a rod shaped motile bacterium which causes typhoid. The bacterium is found in the faecal matter of the infected individual. Contamination of exposed food and water occurs by houseflies.
The symptoms appear 10-15 days after infection. The patient suffers from continuous fever (39° – 40°C) and headache, slow pulse and tenderness in the abdomen and eruption of rashes on the skin. Delirium, i.e. disorder of the mind is also seen when the temperature is high. Intestinal perforation and death may occur in severe cases.
The widal test is administered to diagnose the disease. If the test is positive, antibiotics like Chloromycetin is administered to the patient. The patient is advised complete rest and a strict diet is followed.
The different preventive measures include:
i. Drinking only boiled water
ii. Proper sewage disposal and sanitation techniques
iii. TAB vaccination is administered to prevent infection. This vaccine contains killed typhoid bacteria.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 2. Tuberculosis:
This disease was first discovered by Robert Koch in the year 1882. The causative organism is Mycobacterium tuberculosis. This organism releases a toxin called tuberculin. The disease spreads through droplet infection that is released by coughing, sneezing and sputum of the patient.
The bacterium can invade all parts of the body and multiply rapidly. It can affect the lungs, lymph glands, bones, intestine, etc. The symptoms vary according to the part affected. The patient suffers from fever and has general body weakness.
i. In tuberculosis of the lungs, i.e. pulmonary tuberculosis, the patient suffers from fever, coughs and suffers loss of body weight. The lungs are destroyed during severe infection. The patient also suffers breathlessness and pain in the chest.
ii. In tuberculosis of the lymph glands, the glands swell up and cause pain.
The affected patient is isolated and advised rest, proper diet and medication. Rifampicin and streptomycin are some drugs administered for TB treatment.
Prevention is done by vaccination. The vaccine given is BCG vaccine that stands for Bacillus-Calmette-Guerin named after the scientists Albert Calmette and Camille Guerin.
The vaccine is an attenuated or weakened strain of virus. It is administered by puncturing the skin with a special instrument which has a ring of six short needles. This introduces a protein called tuberculin purified from dead bacteria. If the individual has the disease the skin swells and reddens at the site of the injection. But if the individual has never suffered the disease, the skin does not show any reaction.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 3. Cholera:
Cholera is water borne disease. It is an acute infectious epidemic disease affecting a number of people at the same time. Vibrio cholerae is the bacterium that causes cholera. Drinking contaminated water or using this water for washing food and utensils is the common method of transmission.
The bacterium multiplies in the small intestine and releases a toxin that affects the intestinal lining. It causes secretion of large amounts of water and salts.
The different symptoms include:
i. Vomiting and watery stools (rice water like stools)
ii. Severe loss of water leading to dehydration
iii. Excessive loss of minerals
iv. In left untreated, it can lead to death.
The different control measures are as follows:
i. Oral dehydration solution or ORS is administered to the patient. ORS is a solution that can be prepared in the house. To a glass of water, a pinch of salt, a tablespoon of sugar, a pinch of sodium bicarbonate and a few drops of lemon juice are added. The patient has to take sips of this fluid at regular intervals.
ii. Antibiotics such as tetracycline are also administered to the patient.
The preventive measures include:
i. Drinking boiled water
ii. Proper sanitation and sewage treatment techniques
iii. Personal hygiene and health education
iv. Immunisation with cholera vaccine. However it is a short term immunity which lasts only for about six months only.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 4. Diarrhoea:
Diarrhoea is the infection of the intestine where the patient suffers frequent discharge of watery stools. The different organisms that cause this intestinal infection are bacteria like Escherichia coli, Clostridium botulinum, Salmonella sp.; Protozoans like Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia intestinalis, Balantidium coli; viruses and worms like Ascaris.
Infection occurs by consuming contaminated food and water and by coming in contact with clothes and utensils containing the pathogen or cysts of the pathogen. The organ affected is the intestine.
The different symptoms include:
i. Frequent passage of watery stools
ii. Vomiting and cramps in the abdomen
iii. Blood and mucous in the stool
iv. Sever infection causes dehydration leading to drop in blood pressure
v. Eyes appear sunken with the tongue and buccal cavity becoming dry.
The Control measures include:
i. ORS (Oral dehydration solution) is administered to the patient 5-6 times to prevent dehydration and also each time the patient passes watery stools,
ii. Antibiotics like Norfloxcin, Ofloxacin etc. are given to control the passage of watery stools.
iii. Soft fruits like banana, apples are given to the patient. Curd with methi seeds also curbs the frequent passage of stools and provides relief.
The preventive measures include practising personal and community hygiene.
A few important habits include the following:
i. Wash hands before eating and after defecation.
ii. Wash fruits and vegetables properly before consumption.
iii. Cover all eatables when it is not required.
iv. Dispose wastes properly.
There is no vaccination for preventing diarrhoea.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 5. Pneumonia:
Pneumonia is an acute infection of one or both lungs that can be caused by a bacterium, usually Streptococcus pneumoniae (also called pneumococcus) and Staphylococcus aureus, Haemophilus influenzae or by a virus or fungus. The causal organisms reach the lungs through the respiratory passages. Usually an upper respiratory infection precedes the disease. Pneumonia caused by virus and bacteria are more common than those caused by fungi and parasites.
Most cases of pneumonia are caused by breathing in small droplets that contain the bacteria or virus that can cause pneumonia. These droplets get into the air when a person infected with these germs coughs or sneezes. Once the bacteria, virus or fungus enter the lungs, they usually settle in the air sacs of the lung where they rapidly grow in number. This area of the lung then becomes filled with fluid and pus as the body attempts to fight off the infection.
Most people who develop pneumonia initially have symptoms of a cold which is then followed by a high fever (sometimes as high as 104 degrees), shaking chills, and a cough with sputum production. The sputum is often bloody. Chest pain may develop on one side and the patient may become short of breath. At times, the individual’s skin colour may change and become dusky or purplish due to their blood being poorly oxygenated.
Penicillin is most commonly used to treat pneumococcal pneumonia and other pneumonias caused by bacteria.
The disease is diagnosed using X rays and examination of the sputum and blood. The treatment depends on the cause of pneumonia. Bacterial pneumonia is treated using antibiotics. Occasionally, a chest CT scan or other tests may be needed to distinguish pneumonia from other illnesses.
There are several ways to prevent infectious pneumonia. Vaccination is important for preventing pneumonia in both children and adults. Smoking should be prevented and infection to the upper and lower respiratory passages should be treated immediately to avoid the disease.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 6. Common Cold:
The cold is the most common human ailment. It is a contagious infection of the upper respiratory tract caused by viruses. It is the infection of the mucous membranes of the nose and throat, often involving the sinuses. About 200 viruses such as the rhinoviruses, coronaviruses, echoviruses, paramyxoviruses can cause colds, to which it seems almost no one is immune.
The symptoms start 1-2 days after infection The symptoms of a common cold include nasal stuffiness and drainage, sneezing, sore throat, hoarseness, cough, and perhaps a fever and headache. Many people who suffer from cold feel tired and body pain. The symptoms typically last from 3 to 7 days.
The common cold is spread by respiratory droplets during coughing and sneezing or by contaminated hands or objects. The cold virus can live on non-living things such as pen, book and table for several hours and contact with such items can cause infection in a healthy individual.
When the individual suffers from the infection, the immune system is weakened. Bacteria present in the respiratory tract can take advantage of this condition and can cause secondary infection. In children, the middle ear gets infected, while in adults sinusitis can occur.
The common cold is different from influenza, a more severe viral infection of the respiratory tract that shows the additional symptoms of rapidly rising fever, chills and body pain. The common cold is rarely life threatening. However its complications, such as pneumonia, can be dangerous.
Prevention and Treatment:
The preventive measures of common cold are as follows:
a. Wash hands thoroughly and regularly
b. Avoid contact with the person suffering from cold
c. Sufficient sleep, eating nutritious food, avoiding alcohol would keep the body’s immune system in good condition.
There is no vaccine for preventing cold. Also there is no convincing evidence that vitamin C can prevent the common cold.
There is no treatment that directly fights the cold virus. Antibiotics are ineffective in treating the common cold. The congested and discharging mucous membrane may become a fertile ground for a secondary bacterial invasion that can spread to the larynx, bronchi, lungs, or ears which are treated with antibiotics.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 7. Influenza:
Influenza is also known as the common flu. It is caused by Myxovirus influenzae A, B and C viruses. The virus spreads from person to person by droplet infection by sneezing, coughing, talking. The inner epithelial lining of the respiratory tract is affected, especially nose, throat and windpipe. The common symptoms are sneezing, discharge from nose, cough, body ache and fever.
The symptoms subside in a week and no treatment is known. Symptomatic relief can be obtained by inhalation, gargling. Antiviral drugs like Rimantidine is recommended for treatment and to avoid secondary infections. Vaccines have been prepared to avoid the disease, though immunity lasts only for 3-6 months. Revaccination on a annual basis is recommended.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 8. Amoebiasis:
Amoebiasis is a common infection of the gastrointestinal tract caused by a protozoan, Entamoeba histolytica. In severe cases, extra intestinal infection of the liver, lungs, brain, spleen and skin also occurs. This is called invasive amoebiasis. The symptoms of amoebiasis include nausea, loose bloody stool, weight loss, abdominal pain and tenderness and occasional fever. Rarely, the parasite will invade the body beyond the intestines and cause a more serious infection, such as a liver abscess.
E. histolytica exists in two forms, the vegetative (or trophozoite) form and the cystic forms. The trophozoites dwell in the colon where they multiply and encyst. The cysts are excreted in the stool. Ingestion of the cyst by an individual releases the trophozoites, which colonise in the large intestine. Some trophozoites invade the bowel and cause ulceration in the colon, some may enter the vein and reach the liver and other organs.
The trophozoites are living outside the human body. It is the cysts that are infective to man and remain viable and infective for several days in the faeces, sewage, water and the soil in the presence of moisture and low temperature. The cysts are not affected by chlorine in the amounts normally used for water purification. But they are readily killed if dried, heated or frozen.
Man is the only reservoir of infection. Most of the individuals infected with the cysts are symptom free and are healthy carriers of the cysts. Amoebiasis can affect any age. Amoebiasis is closely related to poor sanitation and socioeconomic status rather than climate.
Intake of contaminated water or food is the common mode of transmission of the disease. Houseflies are mechanical carriers of the cysts and transmit the parasite from the faeces of an infected person to food or water, thereby contaminating them.
If heavy contamination of drinking water supply occurs or fields are irrigated with sewage polluted water are contaminated and this may vegetables and food crops lead to an epidemic of amoebiasis.
Prevention and Control:
The primary preventive measures include the following:
i. Proper Sanitation:
Safe disposal of human excreta coupled with the practice of washing hands after defecation and before eating is the crucial factor in the prevention and control of amoebiasis.
ii. Water Supply:
Water supplies should be protected against faecal contamination because amoebic cysts can survive for several days or weeks in water. Sand filters are quite effective in removing the cysts, though chlorination is ineffective in killing the cysts. Therefore, water filtration and boiling are more effective than chemical treatment of water.
iii. Food Hygiene:
Food and drink meant to be consumed have to be protected against faecal contamination. Uncooked vegetable and fruits can be disinfected with an aqueous solution of acetic acid or vinegar.
iv. Health Education:
People should be educated in food hygiene practices such as hand washing to achieve long-term effects.
The secondary preventive measures include early diagnosis and treatment to avoid spread of the disease. Individuals infected with the pathogen are treated with metronidazole or tinidazole orally.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 9. Ascariasis:
Ascariasis is an intestinal infection caused by the adult Ascaris lumbricoides. The symptoms include nausea, abdominal pain internal bleeding, fever, anaemia and blockage of the intestinal lumen. Live worms are passed out in the stool and sometimes may be vomited. Ascariasis is the most common helminthic infestation.
Ascaria lives in the lumen of the small intestine, where it moves freely. The sexes are separate and exhibit sexual dimorphism. The females are longer and about 20-35 cms in length, while the males are shorter and about 12-30 cms long. The females can lay about 2,40,000 eggs per day to counterbalance the heavy loss in the environment.
The eggs are excreted in the faeces, where they become embryonated and ineffective. After ingestion by man, the embryonated eggs hatch in the small intestine. The larvae that emerge penetrate the gut wall and are carried to the liver, lungs via the blood stream. The larva moults twice in the lungs after which they break through the alveolar wall and migrate to the bronchioles. They are coughed up through the trachea and then swallowed by the human host. Once they reach the intestine, they mature into an adult in 60-80 days.
Man is the only reservoir of infection. The infection rate is very high in children. The round worms cause malnutrition in children, who may show growth retardation. Open air defecation by humans is the most important factor responsible for widespread distribution of ascariasis in the world. Poor congested living conditions, poor hygiene practices are other factors for rapid spread of the disease.
Ingestion of infective eggs in food and water is the mode of transmission. Food that are eaten raw such as salads and vegetables, drinking polluted water conveys the infection readily to an individual. Other means of spread is by fingers contaminated with soil or by ingestion of contaminated soil as in the case of children playing with the soil.
Prevention and Control:
The preventive measures include the following:
i. Proper sanitary disposal of human excreta to prevent or reduce faecal contamination of the soil
ii. Provision of safe drinking water
iii. Following food hygiene habits and personal hygiene
iv. Health education of the community.
A number of drugs are available for the treatment of this disease. Periodic deworming at the intervals of 2-3 months may be undertaken.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 10. Filaria:
Filaria or lymphatic filiariasis is caused by the filarial worm, which includes two species – Wuchereria bancrofti, W. malayi. The parasite requires two species to complete its life cycle. The two causative organisms are very similar in morphology and in the diseases they cause. The primary host or definitive host is man where it resides in the lymph vessels and lymph nodes. The intermediate host is the Culex mosquito, which is also a vector.
Adult female W. bancrofti are found in the lymph nodes and lymphatic channels and are about 10 cm x 250 micrometers, whereas males are only half of that size. The female lays eggs inside the body of man, from which the microfilariae hatch out.
During night the microfilaria migrates in large numbers to the peripheral blood vessels of the body and retreat during day. This is known as nocturnal periodicity. When a mosquito bites man, the larva enters the body of the mosquito and grows 4-5 times in about 10-14 days and become infective to man.
Symptoms include fever attacks with chills and sweats, headache, nausea, vomiting, muscular pains and photophobia. The parasite may enlodge in the lymphatic vessels and cause lymphoderma. The surrounding tissue grows and hardens. The affected organ which is normally the leg, foot, scrotum or breast swells. This condition is known as elephantiasis or filariasis. The stretched skin is susceptible to traumatic injury and infections. However not all infections lead to elephantiasis.
Diagnosis, Treatment and Control:
The presence of microfilaria in the blood samples collected at night confirms the infection in an individual. The National Filaria Control Programme is in progress since 1955 to check the progress of the disease. Steroids help alleviate inflammatory symptoms. The other control measures include prevention of mosquito bites and eradication of mosquitoes in the case of malaria.
Term Paper on Human Disease # 11. Ringworm Infection:
Ringworm is a skin infection caused by many species of a fungus that can affect the scalp, skin, fingers, toe nails or foot. It can affect all age groups. The disease is transmitted by direct skin to skin contact with infected people or pets or indirectly by contact with items such as hair from infected people, barbers clippers, etc.
Ringworm infection in the scalp starts as a small pimple, which gradually becomes larger in size and the region becomes temporarily bald. The infected hair becomes brittle and breaks off. The affected nails become thicker, discolored and brittle, or they become chalky and disintegrate. Ringworm of the body appears as flat, spreading ring-shaped areas.
The edge is reddish and may be either dry and scaly or moist and crusted. As it spreads, the central area clears and appears normal. Ringworm of the foot appears as a scaling or cracking of the skin, especially between the toes. The individual suffers intense itching.
The ringworm infection of the scalp is usually seen 10 to 14 days after contact and ringworm of the body is seen 4 to 10 days after initial contact. Since so many species of fungus can cause ringworm, infection with one species will not make a person immune to future infections.
For the treatment of ringworm, antifungal creams and powders are applied to the affected areas. To prevent spread of the disease, it is important to avoid contact with the infected person and to stop sharing towels, clothing and hats.