Toxoplasmosis [by Jordan Smith]

-Toxoplasmosis is an infection caused by the parasite 'Toxoplasma gondii'

-The toxoplasmosis parasite is found in some undercooked meats, contaminated utensils and surfaces, and cat feces.

Cats are the primary hosts of Toxoplasma, not humans.

-Toxoplasma are not actually dangerous to humans unless a woman is infected in the beginning of her pregnancy.

-The incubation period depends upon the way that the person was infected. If it was a cat, it takes 5 to 20 days. If it was from contaminated meats, it can take from 10 to 23 days.

This is a picture of toxoplasma gondii under a microscope.

-Humans with a normal immune system should usually have no adverse effects.

In some VERY RARE cases, when the parasite ends up in the eyes, it can cause blindness. This is, again, very rare.

-This is untreatable, but again, humans are not the primary hosts- we usually just have an immunity to it.

-Infection can be avoided by washing your hands after handling a cat or cleaning a cat's litterbox or being very careful about cooking meats thoroughly and keeping counters and utensils clean.

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