Talking with patients who’ve had Zika is tough.
Pregnant woman and doctor image via www.shutterstock.com.
Physicians like me are learning about Zika along with our patients. This takes a dose of humility on our part and an understanding from our patients that we learn something new every single day.
Personal ‘hygiene sticks’ used in toilets on the Silk Road.
Hui-Yuan Yeh. Reproduced from the Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports.
How a research team identified parasites in 'hygiene sticks' that travellers on the Silk Road effectively used as their toilet paper.
Those who enter prison uninfected are at risk of becoming infected.
Worldwide, around 30 million people enter and leave prison each year. Of these people, around 4.5 million have hepatitis C, almost 1 million have HIV and 1.5 million have hepatitis B infections.
Cases of AIDS are so few they are no longer recorded on public health registers.
There are good reasons for drawing attention to “the end of AIDS” in Australia. But this needs to be read with caution.
Some 60% of bugs that infect humans originated in animals.
The world’s scientific community is focused on how to improve detection and responses to emerging diseases such as Zika virus and Ebola. So what can we learn from the most recent large-scale outbreaks?
Patients and companions at the Cholera Treatment Center in Haiti, April 2015.
Andres Martinez Casares
Unless drinking water and sanitation infrastructure are improved, cholera could remain in Haiti indefinitely.
A researcher looking at E.coli bacteria strain at the Institute of Food Safety, Animal Health and Environment in Latvia.
What is the difference between these pathogens, and how dangerous are they?
An x-ray showing a pair of lungs infected with TB (tuberculosis).
Many people in the U.S. have no idea that TB is still found here, or what a major health risk it poses in other parts of the world.
Women read Zika virus flyers at the departures area of Santiago’s international airport, January 28, 2016.
Models based on where the mosquitoes that transmit Zika are found and human travel patterns to and from infected areas are key to predicting where the virus will spread.
Municipal workers wait before spraying insecticide to prevent the spread of Aedes aegypti mosquito at Sambodrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, January 26, 2016.
Zika was discovered almost 70 years ago, but wasn't associated with outbreaks until 2007. So how did this formerly obscure virus wind up causing so much trouble in Brazil?
Early necrotising fasciitis is easily missed because the symptoms – fever, pain, swelling and tenderness at the affected site – may be non-specific or confused with a mild, superficial infection.
Necrotising fasciitis is a serious infection that affects the soft tissue.
All we are is just a link in the chain?
Chain via www.shutterstock.com.
Missing links make a good story, but not good science. Outdated metaphors don't help us understand the rapid evolution of infectious diseases such as flu and malaria.
Kent Brantly at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia, August 21 2014.
A year ago, Dr Kent Brantly became the first person treated for Ebola in the US. The director of Emory University's Serious Communicable Disease Unit looks back at we have – and haven't – learned.
Try to predict the outcome of a single coin toss and you’ll have only a 50-50 chance of being correct.
Predicting infectious disease outbreaks is a tricky task to begin with. And it's made harder still by the fact that any individual outcome is subject to unpredictable – or stochastic – effects.
There’s some evidence to suggest transmission can be prevented in crowded locations with the use of simple face masks.
Bacteria qualify as "superbugs" when there are no or few remaining effective antibiotics to kill them.
The new fingerprint test can detect Ebola in minutes.
A new fingerprick test given at the patient's bedside predicts Ebola infection within minutes.
Vaccinations for children and other health services were suspended during the Ebola epidemic.
Ebola has been blamed for a surge in untreated malaria cases in west Africa that could have led to an excess numbers of deaths from malaria, greater than the total caused by the Ebola virus.
Prior to world war one, many more soldiers died of infection rather than combat.
Rupert Brooke was commissioned in the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve as a Sub-Lieutenant. Without seeing combat, he died aboard a French hospital ship, from a mosquito bite that turned septic.
Military needs drove the development of vaccines we still use today.
US troops storming beach via www.shutterstock.com.
During World War II the US military forged partnerships with industry and academia that translated laboratory findings into working products at an unprecedented pace.
Recommended antibiotic courses are often arbitrary.
Advice that you have to finish the whole course of antibiotics reflects long-standing convention or the drug manufacturer’s decision during an initial trial, rather than scientific evidence.