Infection can be defined as the injurious colonization of a host organism, by a foreign species. In such a case, the foreign species, which can also be called the infecting organism, starts utilizing the resources of the host. The result is that the normal functioning of the host is adversely affected. In human beings, the negative effects might manifest themselves in the form of chronic wounds, loss of an infected limb, gangrene and, in some cases, even death. The foreign species usually comprise of microscopic organisms, like bacteria, viruses, parasites, fungi, prions, viroids, and so on. In the following lines, we have provided handy information on the types of general infections and their common symptoms as well.
General infections can be divided into two categories, namely systemic infection and local infection. To know more about both of them, read on.
The cause of a systemic infection comprises of bacteria or virus. The main characteristic of such an infection is that it affects the bloodstream of an individual, with the result that the symptoms spread to the whole of the body. In this case, the pathogen is distributed throughout the body, rather than being concentrated in one area. Bacterial toxin is the major reason that leads to systemic infection. The most common examples of a systemic infection are cold, flu, mononucleosis, strep throat, etc.
Signs and Symptoms of Systemic Infection
- Aches: When a person is suffering from systemic infection, he/she experiences ache in areas such as the forehead and back. In extreme cases, the person experiences body ache too.
- Chills: Systemic infection triggers chills, which make a person shiver even after wearing layers of woolen clothes.
- Fever: Fever is a telltale sign of systemic infection. Depending upon the severity of the infection, the person might suffer from low to high fever.
- Nausea: Systemic infection triggers a feeling of nausea. The person reacts to certain smells by vomiting.
- Vomiting: Vomiting is one of the major symptoms of systemic infection. The person would have the tendency of puking, even after consuming regular food.
- Weakness: Overall weakness in the body is another symptom of systemic infection.
A local infection can be explained as that infection, which does not affect the whole body of an individual. Rather, it is limited to a specific portion of the body. It does not attack the bloodstream and is limited to the outer surface of the body. Some of the most common examples of a local infection include an infected wound, an infected cut, etc.
Signs and Symptoms of Local Infection
- Fever: Fever is the only systemic symptom that can be caused by a local infection.
- Foul Odor Discharge: A foul odor discharge from the affected area is a telltale sign that the person has incurred a problem of local infection.
- Heat at the Site: In some cases, local infection might cause swelling in the affected area, which would in turn cause heat at the site.
- Pain: Pain in the area, which has been infected, is a very visible sign of local infection.
- Pus: One can figure out whether a wound is infected or not, by observing the amount of pus released from there.
- Redness and Swelling: Local infection might cause redness and swelling in the affected area.