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About Infectious Diseases

Infectious diseases affect us all. Learn more about the effective treatment and prevention of infectious diseases.
Chickenpox (Varicella)

Chickenpox (Varicella)

Chickenpox is caused by the highly contagious varicella zoster virus. It is spread by coughing and sneezing, and by direct contact with skin lesions.

Diphtheria

Diphtheria

Diphtheria is an acute bacterial disease that usually affects the tonsils, throat, nose, and/or skin.

Ebola

Ebola

Ebola is a rare and deadly disease caused by infection with a virus that can cause illness in humans and other primates (monkeys, gorillas, and chimpanzees).

Flu (Influenza)

Flu (Influenza)

Influenza (flu) is a highly contagious viral infection of the nose, throat, and lungs that occurs most often in the late fall, winter, and early spring in the US.

Hepatitis

Hepatitis

Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver. The most common types of viral hepatitis in the US are hepatitis A, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C.

Hib Disease

Hib Disease

Hib disease is a serious illness caused by bacteria. Babies and children younger than 5 years old are most at risk for Hib disease, but it can also affect adults with certain medical conditions.

Measles

Measles

Measles is a highly contagious respiratory disease that can result in severe, sometimes permanent, complications including pneumonia, seizures, brain damage, and even death.

Meningococcal Disease

Meningococcal Disease

Meningococcal disease is a serious bacterial infection that most often leads to severe swelling of the tissues surrounding the brain and spinal cord (meningitis) or infection of the bloodstream.

Mumps

Mumps

Mumps is a contagious disease caused by a virus that spreads easily through coughing and sneezing.

Norovirus

Norovirus

Noroviruses are a group of related viruses that are highly contagious. Commonly referred to as “food poisoning” or a “stomach bug,” noroviruses are the most common cause of gastroenteritis in the US.

Pneumococcal Disease

Pneumococcal Disease

Pneumococcal disease is caused by common bacteria that can attack different parts of the body and is a leading cause of serious illness throughout the world.

Polio

Polio

Polio is a highly infectious disease caused by a virus that invades the nervous system and is spread through contact with the stool (feces) of an infected person or droplets from a sneeze or cough. 

Rotavirus

Rotavirus

Rotavirus is a highly contagious virus that infects nearly all young children and is one of the most common and serious causes of severe diarrhea in the US.

Shingles (Herpes Zoster)

Shingles (Herpes Zoster)

Shingles is caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox. The virus stays inactive in the body for life and can reactivate years, or even decades later, causing shingles.

Tetanus (Lockjaw)

Tetanus (Lockjaw)

Tetanus, commonly called lockjaw, is a bacterial disease that affects the nervous system. It is contracted through cuts or wounds that become contaminated with tetanus bacteria.

Whooping Cough (Pertussis)

Whooping Cough (Pertussis)

Whooping cough (also called pertussis), is a serious infection that spreads easily from person to person. The infection causes coughing spells that are so severe that it can be hard to breathe, eat, or sleep.