Definitions of Areas of Expertises:
caused by the fungus Coccidioides immitis. This fungus is found in the soil in the southwestern United States, particularly western Texas, Arizona, California. It is the causative agent of San Joaquin valley fever. It usually enters the body via inhalation. It affects Blacks, Philipinos, Native Americans and pregnant women severely. It can cause pneumonia, meningitis, osteomyelitis, ulcers, disseminated disease and fever of unknown origin. Individuals who get coccidioides meningitis will require lifelong therapy. It can reactivate in patients with weakened immune systems due to certain diseases and those taking certain immunosuppressive medications. It is not contagious.
caused by the fungus Histoplasma capsulatum. This fungus is found in bat and pigeon droppings, caves, soil. It is endemic in eastern Texas, Alabama, Louisianna and areas bordering the lower Mississippi River. It usually enters the body via inhalation. It can cause pneumonia, mediastinitis, esophagitis, colitis, sinusitis, ulcers, disseminated disease, meningitis and protracted fever. It can reactivate in immunocompromised patients and those taking certain immunosuppressive medications.
Is caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. In ancient times it was known as consumption. It is endemic in developing countries. It is contagious ie spread from person to person via droplets from sneeze or cough. It primarily causes a chronic pneumonia. It can causes extrapulmonary disease such as lymphadenitis, meningomyelitis, osteomyelitis, cystitis, cervicitis, septic arthritis, pancreatitis, enterocolitis primarily in immigrants. It is a reportable disease. Individuals are treated by the county health department. Medications, xrays and laboratory testing are provided free of charge. The main presenting symptoms are prolong fever, weight loss, night sweat, chronic cough.
It is caused by a bacteria Brucella species. It usually affects individuals who consume unpasteurized diary products or those who come in contact with meat of an infected animal. It is usually seen in immigrants. It causes osteomyelitis, epidural abscess, orchitis, endocarditis, lymphadenitis and protracted fevers.
Infection of the heart valve by a bacteria or fungus. Individuals at risk include those with history of intravenous drug abuse, poor dentition, congenital or acquired valvular heart disease.
- Is caused by the parasite Taenia solium. It primarily causes brain abscesses in immigrants. Taenia solium is found in pigs. Individuals who consume pork or food that has been contaminated with human feces infected with Taenia solium eggs are at risk for neurocysticercosis. The main presenting symptom is seizure.
Is caused by the parasite Sarcoptes scabiei. It is very contagious and is spread by contact. The most common presenting symptom is chronic intense itching and rash. It primarily affects immunocompromised individuals and those with poor hygiene.
A virus that infects the liver and can lead to cirrhosis and/or liver cancer. A vaccine exists to prevent this infection. It is 100 times more infectious than HIV. It is spread via intercourse, blood transfusions, dirty needles or exposure to infected blood and body fluids. It is highly prevalent in Asia. If infected during childhood there is a 50-80% chance of the disease becoming chronic. If infected as an adult there is a 10% chance of the disease becoming chronic.
The virus that causes AIDS. It can affect any organ-brain, skin, lungs, heart, bone marrow. Early signs of HIV infection range from asymptomatic to dermatitis, tuberculosis, shingles or lymphoma.
Esther Morrison, M.D.
Board Certified in Internal Medicine
Board CertIfied in Infectious Disease.
Member of the American Medical Assocation
Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA)
Florida Infectious Diseases Society (FIDS)
Area of Expertise:
Atypical Mycobacterial Infections
Pulmonary and Extra-pulmonary Tuberculosis
Endemic Fungal Infections--Coccidioidomycosis and Histoplasmosis
Bacterial and Fungal Endocarditis