List of Viral diseases in human: pathogen, incubation period, transmission, symptoms, prophylaxis and treatment

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Diseases & Pathogen
Incubation period & Epidemiology
Prophylaxis & Treatment

29 months in adults, 12 months in children.

In homosexuals or bisexual men, drug users who use common syringes, babies born mothers with AIDS, hemophiliacs and persons with coagulation disorders. (intimate contact of body secretions such as blood, semen, saliva, stool & urine)
Loss of immune power.
Patient passes yellow urine and white stool. Weight loss, swollen glands, diarrhea, fever and night sweat, oral candidiasis. Dementia
Diagnosis: ELISA test (Enzyme-linked immune-sorbent Assay).
·      Educate peoples about AIDS.
·      Making blood (from blood banks) safe from HIV.
·      Use of disposable needles and syringes.
·      Advocating safe sex and free distribution of condoms.
·      Controlling drug abuse.
·      Regular check-ups for HIV in susceptible population.

Treatment: Anti-viral drugs partially effective. They can only prolong the life of the patient.

Several drugs are under investigation.
2.     Avian flu (H5N1)

H5N1 virus
Contact with infected poultry. Air borne spread
Low pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) A: Conjunctivitis, influenza-like illness (fever, cough, sore throat, muscle aches), lower respiratory disease (pneumonia).

Highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) A: Conjunctivitis, influenza-like illness, severe respiratory illness (e.g. shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, pneumonia, acute respiratory distress, viral pneumonia, respiratory failure) with multi-organ disease, nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting and sometimes neurologic changes (altered mental status, seizures).
CDC currently recommends oseltamivir, peramivir, or zanamivir.
3.     Chickenpox (Varicella)

Pathogen: Varicella zoster virus (VZV)  - also known as human herpes virus 3 (HHV-3)
14-16 days

Host: generally children of 10 years.
Infection is by contact
Dark red rash or pox, changing to pustules which are first transparent (tear drop vesicles), later become cloudy in 24 hrs.
Prophylaxis: Now vaccine available.
Passive immunity is induced by ZIG (Zoster Immunoglobulin)
4.     Chikungunya

Chikungunya (CHIK) Virus
3–7 days.
Aedes mosquito biting
Fever and joint pain. Headache, muscle pain, joint swelling, or rash.
No medicine.

Decrease the symptoms:

Drink fluids to prevent dehydration
Take medicines, (ibuprofen, naproxen, acetaminophen, or paracetamol) to relieve fever and pain.
5.     Common cold (Acute viral rhinopharyngitis; Acute coryza)

Disease of the upper respiratory system (nose and throat)

Last for 3-7 days
Rapidly rising fever, chills, and body and muscle aches.
Nasal congestion and discharge, sore throat, hoarseness, cough, headache, tiredness etc.
Drink plenty of fluids, rest, use painkillers (paracetamol and ibuprofen), decongestants
6.     Dengue fever

Dengue viruses (DEN-1, DEN-2, DEN-3 and DEN-4) – Flavi viruses-
4-6 days.

Vector: Aedes aegypti mosquito
Sudden high fever, Severe headache, Pain behind the eyes, Severe joint and muscle pain, Fatigue, Nausea, Vomiting, Skin rash, which appears 2-5 days after the onset of fever, Mild bleeding (such a nose bleed, bleeding gums, or easy bruising). Decreased platelet count.
No antiviral treatment.

Control fever and pain with paracetamol rather than aspirin (aspirin may promote bleeding), and increasing fluid intake.

Prevention: People experiencing fever should not be in an environment where they may be bitten by mosquitoes.

There is no vaccine.
Personal protection and mosquito control.

Ebolavirus (EBOV)

Initial symptoms are flu-like: sudden onset of fever, muscle aches and pains, tiredness, headache.

On progresses: diarrhea, vomiting, headache and confusion, rash, sore throat and cough, extreme tiredness and collapse.

Some people may have bleeding problems, multi-organ failure and death.
Diagnosis: PCR on a blood specimen.
Incubation period: From 2 to 21 days, most commonly 8 to 10 days.

Treatment: get treatment and avoid spreading the disease to others.

Prevention: Isolate the patients. Health care workers should use hand hygiene and appropriate personal protective equipment. Males who have had Ebola virus disease should use a condom.
Those who visit an area where Ebola virus disease occurs should not eat raw or undercooked ‘bush meat’ including ape, monkey or bat.
People should not have contact (or eat) with blood, meat or body fluids of animals which show signs of Ebola virus disease.
8.     Encephalitis

Aribo viruses like alpha virus
Vectors: Culex & Aedes

Host: man and small mammals
High fever, headache, drowsiness and inflammation of brain often fatal.
No specific treatment
9.     Epstein-Barr Virus Infectious Mononucleosis (Mono/ the kissing disease/ Pfeiffer's disease/ in British English, glandular fever)

Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) or cytomegalovirus (CMV)
·    Through saliva or blood, often through kissing, or by sharing a drinking glass, an eating utensil or a needle.
·    Also spread through coughing or sneezing.
Most common in adolescents and young adults, characterized by fever, sore throat and fatigue.
No drugs and vaccination.

Wash hands and have good hygiene to prevent the spread of infection.
10.  German measles (Rubella)

Incubation period: 2-3 weeks
Via nose or throat
Enlargement of lymph nodes in the neck and a widespread pink rash.
Headache, sore throat and slight pain.

Transmission: Faecal-oral

·    Contaminated food, drink and eating utensils
·    Hands contaminated via contact with nappies, toys or towels soiled with faeces from an infected person
·    Oral/anal sexual contact
·    Sewage-contaminated water or shellfish
·    Travel to countries where hepatitis A is endemic
·    Injecting and non-injecting drug use.

Fatigue, nausea, abdominal pain, loss of appetite and low-grade fever, pain in the abdomen, joints, or muscles, diarrhoea, nausea, or vomiting, fatigue, fever, or loss of appetite, dark urine, weight loss, or yellow skin and eyes
The hepatitis A vaccine is typically given in two doses - initial vaccination followed by a booster shot six months later.

·    Blood-to-blood
·    Sharing injecting equipment
·    Unprotected sex
·    Mother-to-baby transmission at or around the time of birth
·    Child-to-child contact through open sores and wounds
·    Tattooing or body piercing
·    Household contact – sharing razors and toothbrushes
Yellowing of the eyes, abdominal pain and dark urine. Some people, particularly children, don't experience any symptoms.
In chronic cases, liver failure, cancer or scarring can occur.
Pain in the abdomen, fatigue, feeling tired, loss of appetite, or malaise, fluid in the abdomen or nausea, web of swollen blood vessels in the skin or yellow skin and eyes, dark urine, itching, or swelling
The hepatitis B vaccine is typically given as three or four injections over six months.

·    Blood-to-blood contact
·    Sharing injecting equipment
·    tattooing, body piercing or acupuncture
Most people have no symptoms.
Fatigue, nausea, loss of appetite and yellowing of the eyes and skin, bleeding, bloating, blood in stool, fluid in the abdomen, or nausea, fatigue, feeling tired, or loss of appetite, bleeding, web of swollen blood vessels in the skin, or weight loss
Stop using illicit drugs.
Be cautious about body piercing and tattooing.
Practice safer sex.

Blood-to-blood contact
Most infections in Australia are associated with:
·    immigration from a high prevalence country (a country where hepatitis B and D are more common)
·    sharing injecting equipment
Abdominal pain, nausea and fatigue.
Pain in the abdomen, fatigue, nausea, or yellow skin and eyes
Hepatitis B vaccination will prevent infection with hepatitis D

·    Faeces containing the virus are transferred to another person’s mouth.
·    Travel to countries where hepatitis E is endemic.
·    From pregnant woman to her fetus
·    Through infected blood transfusion
Jaundice, lack of appetite and nausea. In rare cases, it may progress to acute liver failure.

Pain in the abdomen or joints,
nausea, pale faeces, or vomiting, fatigue, fever, or loss of appetite, dark urine or yellow skin and eyes
There is currently no vaccine available

HSV-1 is mainly transmitted by oral-to-oral contact to cause oral herpes (which can include symptoms known as “cold sores”), but can also cause genital herpes.

HSV-2 is a sexually transmitted infection that causes genital herpes.
Oral herpes infection is mostly asymptomatic. Symptoms include painful blisters or open sores in or around the mouth. Sores on the lips (“cold sores”). Infected persons experience a tingling, itching or burning sensation around their mouth, before the appearance of sores. After initial infection, the blisters or ulcers can periodically recur.

Genital herpes caused by HSV-1 can be asymptomatic. When symptoms do occur, genital herpes is characterised by 1 or more genital or anal blisters or ulcers.

Itching, swelling, emission of fluid from swelling, headache, fatigue, overall gloomy mental state
Antiviral medications, such as acyclovir, famciclovir, and valacyclovir, are the most effective medications available. These help to reduce the severity and frequency of symptoms, but cannot cure the infection.
17.  Herpes zoster (Shingles)

Very rare in children and adults, but its incidence is high in the elderly, as well as in any age group of immuno-compromised patients.
Affects the nervous system with or without appearance of a rash on the skin
Painful blisters over the area of a dermatome.
Several antiviral medicines—acyclovir, valacyclovir, and famciclovir.

18.  Influenza (flu or grippe)

Orthomyxoviridae family (Influenza virus A & B)- RNA virus
24-72 hrs

Infection by air (nasal discharge)
Onset of fever for a week accompanied by severe body ache and pain with sore throat.
Sulphanomide drugs
19.  Jaundice

Contaminated water
Virus attacks liver, loss of appetite, vomiting and fever; bilirubin and biliverdin increase in blood. Eyes and skin becomes yellow. Patient passes yellow urine and white stool
Complete rest with high carbohydrate and fat free diet required.
20.  Measles (Rubeolla)

Rubeola or Measles virus (genus Morbillivirus)
10-12 days
Contagious & droplet infection.
Infection through air
Rubeolla (Skin eruption) similar to prickly heat called Koplic spots; cold, headache followed by cough fever and sneezes
Passive immunity by gamma-globulin and active immunity by Edmonston B vaccine.


Antibiotics & sulpha drugs
21.  Meningitis (Viral)

Coxsackie or Echovirus groups of enteroviruses
Contagious, because the viruses are easily passed between people.
Enteroviruses are present in the feces, mucus, and saliva of infected people, and are transmitted through direct contact with an infected person or surface.
Inflammation of the protective membranes covering the nervous system.
Intense headache, fever, loss of appetite, intolerance to light and sound, rigidity of the muscles especially of neck.
In severe cases: convulsions, vomiting, delirium leading to death.
Prolonged bed rest, darkness, and quiet.
No drugs against viral meningitis.
22.  Mumps

10-25 days
Contagious & droplet infection.
In children
Inflammation of parotid glands, painful glands of body. May attack testes causing sterility
Aspirin to control fever and pain; live attenuated mumps virus vaccine

Poliovirus (Picorna virus)
14-30 days
Direct and oral.
Hosts: Man and monkey. Enters body through contaminated food and water.
Infection spreads through blood and lymphatic system, reaches CNS; Muscles do not get impulses and get atrophied that lead to permanent paralysis of arms and legs. Virus also attacks respiratory centres in medulla of brain.
Salk vaccine,
Sabin vaccine (OPV or Oral Polio Vaccine)
24.  Rabies (Hydrophobia)

Rabies virus (‘street virus’ or Rhabdo virus)
2-6 weeks

Host: man
Vectors: Rabid dogs, vampire bats, jackals and wolves (in Iran)
High fever, severe and painful spasms of muscles and larynx at the sight of liquids. Acute encephalitis. Death occurs due to convulsions and paralysis.
First given by Louis Pasteur (with 14 injections). i.e. Duck Embryo (DE) rabies vaccine.
25.  Rift Valley fever (RVF)

Rift Valley fever virus
Incubation period: 2-6 days

Transmitted from animals to man by mosquitoes
Symptoms resemble to influenza.

Fever, generalized weakness, back pain, and dizziness at the onset of the illness. Typically, patients recover within two days to one week after onset of illness.
No vaccines are currently available for human vaccination
26.  SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome)

Close contact with respiratory droplets containing the SARS virus
Fever, lethargy, myalgia, cough, sore throat, gastrointestinal symptoms
Antibiotics are ineffective, as SARS is a viral disease. Treatment of SARS is largely supportive with antipyretics, supplemental oxygen and mechanical ventilation as needed.

There is no vaccine to date
27.  Smallpox (Variola or Variola vera)

Variola major (more deadly form) or Variola minor
10-14 days
Contagious & droplet infection

Host: Man. Infection occurs at the time of falling of scabs.
Fever for 3 days, then rashes come out, most abundant and earliest on face, lesions on mucus membrane inside mouth. Papules are intradermal. Occasionally blindness due to corneal ulcerations and infertility in male survivors.
Persistent skin scarring - pockmarks - is nearly universal
Anti Variola vaccine (cause active immunity)

No case reported after 1978
28.  Swine Flu (H1N1) or Pig Influenza

H1N1 virus
Contact with pigs, cough & sneeze of infected person
Fever, cough, sore throat, chills, weakness and body aches.
Pain in the muscles, dry cough, high fever, or malaise, runny nose or sneezing, headache or sore throat.
Children, pregnant women and the elderly are at risk for severe infection.
Stay home if you're sick.
Wash your hands thoroughly and frequently.
Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze or cough.
Avoid contact.
Reduce exposure within your household.

Yellow fever virus (an arbovirus)
Transmitted by mosquitoes especially Aedes aegypti
Hemorrhagic illness
Degeneration of the tissues of liver and kidneys.
Chills, headache, pain in the back and limbs, fever, vomiting, constipation, reduced flow of urine, jaundice


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