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Articles on Infectious diseases

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Researchers can test blood samples taken for other reasons to see if patients have previously had COVID-19. Don Bartletti/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

COVID-19 official counts can miss mild cases – here’s how serosurveys that analyze blood for signs of past infection can help

Your blood can hold a record of past illnesses. That information can reveal how many people have had a certain infection – like 58% of Americans having had COVID-19 by the end of February 2022.
It is critical that the affected communities have access to safe drinking water. Phill Magakoe /AFP via Getty Images

Floods create health risks: what to look out for and how to avoid them

The displacement of people and overcrowding that often results from flooding provide optimal conditions for outbreaks of respiratory and gastrointestinal illness.
Bees feeding in monoculture fields of single crops such as sunflowers crowd together and pass parasites to one another at high rates. Lauren Ponisio/University of Oregon

Planting mixes of flowers around farm fields helps keep bees healthy

Huge single-crop fields attract bees in such numbers that they spread parasites to one another. Planting diverse mixes of flowers around fields helps spread out pollinators and keep them healthy.
The CDC’s new recommendations have caused consternation among the public, the media and even among doctors. Justin Paget/DigitalVision via Getty Images

Clarifying the CDC’s COVID-19 quarantine and isolation guidelines – an infectious disease doc looks at the latest research

The CDC’s controversial recommendation changes are based on new studies showing that most omicron transmission takes place within five days of the onset of illness.
COVID-19 will not be the last infectious disease event of our time. We need to prepare for the next challenge with evidence and knowledge. (Shutterstock)

Future infectious diseases: Recent history shows we can never again be complacent about pathogens

Before COVID-19, clean water, antibiotics and vaccines had made us complacent about infectious disease. Infection control can no longer be taken for granted. We must be prepared for future pandemics.
While ivermectin was originally used to treat river blindness, it has also been repurposed to treat other human parasitic infections. ISSOUF SANOGO/AFP via Getty Images

Ivermectin is a Nobel Prize-winning wonder drug – but not for COVID-19

Ivermectin has been a lifesaving drug for people with parasitic infections like river blindness and strongyloidiasis. But taking it for COVID-19 may result in the opposite effect.
A bad flu year on top of the pandemic could mean trouble for already-stressed hospitals. George Clerk/E+ Collection via Getty Images

Flu season paired with COVID-19 presents the threat of a ‘twindemic,’ making the need for vaccination all the more urgent

Recent computer modeling shows the upcoming flu season might see a surge in cases. Coupled with COVID-19’s continued threat, doctors are again urging Americans to get their shots.

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