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Infectious Diseases

November 18, 1987
Diseases reported to the Los Angeles County Department of Health: Year to Year to August, 1987 August, 1986 Date, 1987 Date, 1986 Intestinal Infections Amebiasis 34 62 293 307 Campylobacteriosis 95 122 729 745 Giardiasis 105 152 906 942 Salmonellosis 143 165 1,144 900 Shigellosis 120 179 739 720 Year to Year to August, 1987 August, 1986 Date, 1987 Date, 1986 Childhood diseases Mumps 3 6 42 43 Measles 2 2 17 37 German measles 3 6 35 29 Whooping cough 8 0 37 18 Scarlet fever 9 12 305 282 Year to
November 7, 2013 | By Wendy Orent
There is a subculture in America you may know little about. Its members are haunted by a slender, twisting, tick-borne germ known as Borrelia burgdorferi , the microbe responsible for Lyme disease, and they are trying desperately to warn us that we are all at risk of contracting a debilitating, chronic illness characterized by joint pain, fatigue, mood disorders and a long list of other symptoms. Arrayed against these true believers are most of the mainstream scientists who study B. burgdorferi . Although they acknowledge that Lyme disease is a genuine illness that humans can get from being bitten by infected ticks, and that those who are not treated promptly can develop worse symptoms, they don't believe that infection leads to a chronic condition.
December 26, 2012 | By Kenneth R. Weiss
Poverty and disease often come together. That much is well understood. But how much does poverty foster disease? Or, how much can disease perpetuate poverty? And what's the role of nature, given that so many infectious diseases are spread by mosquitoes or spend part of their life cycle outside of the human body? A new study finds that certain types of infectious and parasitic diseases have a significant influence on economic development across the world and accounts for some of the differences in per-capita income between those who live in countries in the tropics or those in temperate latitudes.
August 30, 2012 | By Thomas H. Maugh II, Los Angeles Times
 In what is almost certainly a medical first, a physician from my hometown of St. Joseph, Mo., has identified a new viral disease thought to be transmitted by ticks. The virus  is related to hantaviruses, which have recently caused at least two deaths at Yosemite National Park, but so far only two confirmed cases have been observed. Because the two farmers who contracted the virus live 60 miles apart, however, researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suspect there are probably many more unrecognized cases.
August 27, 2012 | By Thomas H. Maugh II, This post has been corrected. Please see below for details
Massachusetts researchers are beginning a clinical trial using eggs from the pig whipworm parasite Trichuris suis to modulate the autoimmune attack that produces Crohn's disease, a severe form of bowel inflammation. Preliminary results suggest that the harmless worms can tamp down the immune responsethat produces Crohn's without the side effects of existing drugs, which leave patients more susceptible to infectious diseases. The eggs are also being tested against other forms of autoimmune disease, including irritable bowel syndrome and multiple sclerosis.
June 5, 2012 | By John Glionna
Omar Amin was browsing for books, but instead he got the boot. The 73-year-old was looking for gifts for his two grandsons in an Arizona Barnes & Noble store when he got a rude tap on the shoulder: It seems a female customer told store officials she was “uncomfortable” that a man was in the children's section unaccompanied by any minor. A store employee told the 73-year-old Amin, the director of a Scottsdale medical clinic, to leave and escorted him out of the business.
June 28, 2011 | By Marissa Cevallos, HealthKey / For the Booster Shots blog
Duct tape – is there no end to its usefulness? Apparently not. Now we learn that using duct tape in hospitals could be a tool in the fight against infectious disease. Call it a handyman’s quarantine. An infection-prevention team at Trinity Medical Center in the Quad Cities along the Illinois and Iowa border, wanted to create safe zones in which healthcare workers could talk to patients with infectious diseases. So they used 3-foot squares of red duct tape to indicate where precisely that zone was located.
December 14, 2010 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times
Life expectancy soared over the last part of the 20th century as treatments for major diseases improved and infectious diseases were quelled by vaccines and better treatment. The most recent data, however, hint that life expectancy is no longer growing. And, according to a new study, we may spend more years sick than we did even a decade ago. In a fascinating paper published Monday in the Journal of Gerontology , noted gerontologist Eileen Crimmins and her colleague Hiram Beltran-Sanchez, both of USC, suggest that the goal of a long life marked by mostly healthy years may not be possible for most of humanity.
July 10, 2010 | By Chris Kraul, Los Angeles Times
Peering up into tree branches 100 feet above the floor of the jungle, Angela Maldonado spots a family of monkeys where someone with a less practiced eye would see nothing but a maze of brown and green foliage. "They're intelligent, charismatic creatures that express happiness, pain and grief. They make you feel what they are feeling," Maldonado said, squinting up at the rain forest canopy outside this sweltering Amazon port city. "They're a lot like us." Such empathy explains why Maldonado, a 36-year-old primate conservationist, has sought, as her lifework, to keep Colombia's night monkeys out of the hands of indigenous hunters who sell them to medical laboratories for infectious disease research.
February 22, 2010 | Jill U. Adams
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has ordered state health and environmental agencies to continue to investigate a rash of birth defects that occurred in the small San Joaquin Valley town of Kettleman City. Five of 20 babies born in Kettleman City over a 14-month period had cleft lips or cleft palates, an unusually high rate compared with what's considered normal. Worldwide, cleft deformities occur in about 1 in every 700 live births, according to a November study in the journal the Lancet.
October 7, 2009 | Associated Press
U.S. troops set up a field hospital Tuesday and rerouted ships to aid victims of a powerful earthquake that left hundreds of thousands homeless, in their largest relief operation in Muslim-majority Indonesia since the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. The expansion of the U.S. mission comes as efforts shifted from searching for survivors amid the rubble to providing relief to villages that have been cut off by massive landslides generated by last week's magnitude 7.6 quake. Aid workers from at least 20 countries focused on caring for the homeless, who huddled in makeshift shelters and cooked meager meals of rice and noodles over open fires or ate vegetables from their fields.
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