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Frequently Asked Questions

What are infectious diseases?

Infectious diseases are caused by viruses, bacteria, or other microorganisms. The human race is constantly fighting against these diseases, but the battle is never over. The best way to protect yourself from infectious diseases is to stay away from people who have them and get vaccinated.

The most common types of infectious diseases are foodborne, sexually transmitted, respiratory, and skin.

What is considered an infectious disease?

Infectious diseases are disorders caused by organisms such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, or parasites. Many organisms live in and on our bodies. They are usually harmless or even useful.

What to expect from the infectious disease doctor

First, an infectious disease doctor will review your medical records and perform a physical exam. Based on this initial assessment, they will order tests, which could include:

Blood and urine tests
pharyngeal swabs
stool samples
lumbar punctures
Imaging Scans
tissue biopsies

They may see other specialists, such as a dermatologist for skin infections or a pulmonologist for lung problems. Follow-up appointments can also be scheduled if needed.

On your first visit, bring all your medical records: X-rays, lab reports, and immunization records. Bring a list of any allergies you have and any medications you take, including birth control pills, as these can interrupt antibiotic treatment.

What if I am already enrolled in IDPB Health?

You have to log in to the program to schedule a new visit.

Where do germs come from?

Germs are almost everywhere. There are thousands of different types. Some live on the skin or inside the mouth, intestines, and genitals (especially the vagina). Other germs live in the soil or in the water and can enter the body.

How do doctors know if I have an infection?

Doctors suspect an infection based on your symptoms. They do not usually test for common infections, such as colds and skin infections. For other infections, doctors often send a sample to the lab to test for germs. Depending on where the infection appears to be, they may send a sample of:

sputum (mucus that is coughed up)
Swabs from the throat, penis, or vagina

Consult with an IDB expert.

Do you have any questions?

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