Skip to Main Content Health Care Professionals Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit Search

Health Topics - Diseases A-Z List

Find out information on diseases like avian flu, Babesiosis, Bacterial Meningitis, Anaplasmosis, Clostridium Difficile, Cyclosporiasis, Giardiasis, German Measles and many others.

  • Amebiasis

    What is it? Amebiasis is a disease caused by a one-celled parasite called Entamoeba histolytica. Who is at risk for amebiasis? Although anyone can have this disease, it is most common in people who live in developing countries that have poor sanitary conditions. It is also found in people who have travelled to developing countries […]

    Learn More About Amebiasis
  • Anaplasmosis

    Anaplasmosis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is Anaplasmosis (Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis)? Anaplasmosis, also referred to as Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis (HGA), is a disease caused by the bacteria Anaplasma phagocytophilum carried in some ticks. Where has the disease been found? Ticks capable of carrying the disease can be found in North America, Europe and Asia. In the U.S., […]

    Learn More About Anaplasmosis
  • Avian Flu

    PDF/Printer friendly version Bird Handlers/Workers Avian flu is a viral disease which can be very contagious and even deadly in poultry (e.g., chickens). Of great concern are the highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 viruses that have killed millions of birds and have infected humans in other countries. If these viruses are found in Canada, take […]

    Learn More About Avian Flu
  • Babesiosis

    Babesiosis

    PDF/Printer friendly version What is Babesiosis? Babesiosis is a rare but severe tick-borne disease caused by various types Babesia parasites that infect red blood cells. Where has this disease been found? With the parasite being found worldwide, Babesiosis has been found scattered throughout much of the world including North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. How […]

    Learn More About Babesiosis
  • Bacterial Vaginosis

    What is Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)? Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) is a type of vaginal infection that results from the overgrowth of bacteria normally present in the vagina. Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is the most common vaginal infection in women of reproductive age. The normal vagina contains many types of bacteria. One type of bacteria, Lactobacillus, is present […]

    Learn More About Bacterial Vaginosis
  • Bacterial meningitis

    What is it? Bacterial meningitis is an infection in the fluid of the spinal cord, and in the lining around the brain.  It is more common in with winter and spring.  Infants are a highest risk for this illness, followed by teenagers. What are the symptoms? Bacterial meningitis can cause a high fever, headaches and a […]

    Learn More About Bacterial meningitis
  • Botulism (Food-borne)

    What is food-borne botulism? The bacterium Clostridium botulinum, which is found throughout the environment (i.e. soil and water) produces a toxin which is the cause of food-borne botulism. Botulism is an illness that can result in paralysis of the central nervous system, leading to organ failure and even death. Food or drink that contains the […]

    Learn More About Botulism (Food-borne)
  • Breast cancer

    Breast cancer is the most common cancer in Ontario women. In 2009 it is estimated that: 8,700 Ontario women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. 2,100 Ontario women will die from it. 80% of breast cancers are found in women over the age of 50 and 50% of breast cancers occur in women aged 50-69. […]

    Learn More About Breast cancer
  • Campylobacter Enteritis

    (C. Jejeuni) PDF/Printer friendly version What is it? Campylobacter Enteritis is a bacterial disease of the small intestine most commonly caused by an organism called Campylobacter jejeuni (C. jejeuni). It occurs worldwide and is commonly found to be a cause of travellers’ diarrhea. In Canada and other industrialized countries, it occurs more often in children […]

    Learn More About Campylobacter Enteritis
  • Cancer

    In 2007, the Health Unit released the Haldimand-Norfolk Cancer Report. The report provides an overview of all cancers, selected types of cancers, screening practices and selected lifestyle behaviours and risk factors in Haldimand and Norfolk compared to Ontario. Click here to view the report. For information on some specific cancers: Breast Cancer Cervical Cancer Oral […]

    Learn More About Cancer
  • Cervical Cancer and Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version Cervical Cancer and Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Strong evidence shows that the main cause of cervical cancer, and changes in the cervix that lead to cancer, is infection with a high-risk form of human papillomavirus (HPV). There are more than 100 types of HPV but only a small number are high-risk cancer causing. […]

    Learn More About Cervical Cancer and Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Cervical cancer

    The cervix is at the top of the vagina and is the opening to the uterus. The cervix is made up of cells, the building blocks of our bodies. In many women, cells on the cervix can change from healthy to unhealthy. Typically, the unhealthy cells change back to healthy cells on their own. In […]

    Learn More About Cervical cancer
  • Chicken Pox

    What is it? Chicken pox is a contagious rash and is caused by a virus called varicella zoster. The infection is usually mild in children. But newborn babies and adults can become very sick if they get chickenpox. Chicken pox is most common in the late winter and early spring. Signs and symptoms? Begins with […]

    Learn More About Chicken Pox
  • Chlamydia

    Chlamydia (Cla-mid-ee-uh) is the name of the bacteria that cause the most common sexually transmitted disease (STD). Chlamydia is much like gonorrhea and in the past, the two diseases were often confused with one another. It may take one to six weeks for symptoms to show up. However, some people never have symptoms. Up to […]

    Learn More About Chlamydia
  • Clostridium Difficile (C. Difficile)

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? C. difficile is a bacterium that produces a toxin (a type of poison) that can cause an inflammation of the intestinal tract. It is the most common cause of hospital-acquired infectious diarrhea. C. difficile can be part of the normal bacteria that live in the intestine. It can also […]

    Learn More About Clostridium Difficile (C. Difficile)
  • Common Childhood Illnesses

    Here are some illnesses that children often get. All of these spread from person to person. The table shows the following: Disease: The name your health care professional will call it. Symptoms: The signs of sickness your child will have or show. Spread: The way your child can get or spread the disease. Infectious: The […]

    Learn More About Common Childhood Illnesses
  • Cryptosporidiosis

    What is it? Cryptosporidiosis is an illness caused by a single celled parasite (Cryptosporidium). When the parasite enters the body, it lives in the intestine and is passed in the feces (stool). Cryptosporidium causes the diarrheal disease Cryptosporidiosis. It’s occurrence is worldwide. How is it spread? Cryptosporidium is shed in the feces of infected animals […]

    Learn More About Cryptosporidiosis
  • Cyclosporiasis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Cyclosporiasis is a bowel infection. It is caused by a parasite called Cyclospora cayetanensis (SIGH-clo-SPORE-uh KYE-uh-tuh-NEN-sis). This parasite is so tiny it can only be seen by a microscope. The first known human cases of illness caused by this parasite were reported in 1979. Reporting of this illness became […]

    Learn More About Cyclosporiasis
  • ESBL

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Extended spectrum beta lactamase (ESBL) microbes are specific bacteria that produce enzymes (extended spectrum beta lactamases) that can break down many common antibiotics, making the antibiotics ineffective. ESBL microbes have been present in Europe and the USA for almost 20 years. Only recently have these bacteria been detected in […]

    Learn More About ESBL
  • Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE)

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version Also known as sleeping sickness, Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEv) is a zoonotic virus found in North, Central and South America as well as the Caribbean. In particular, transmission is most common around freshwater, hardwood swamps and coastal plains including the Great Lakes region as well as the Atlantic and Gulf Coast […]

    Learn More About Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE)
  • Escherichia coli (E. coli)

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version E. Coli 0157 What is it? E.coli 0157:H7 is a strain of E.coli that produces a toxin and can cause severe illness. Most other strains of E.coli are harmless and live in the intestines of healthy animals and humans. How is it spread? People usually become infected with E.coli 0157:H7 by eating […]

    Learn More About Escherichia coli (E. coli)
  • Fifth Disease (Parvovirus B19)

    What is it? Fifth disease is sometimes called “slapped cheek” syndrome because of the red rash it causes. It is a common infection of the airway and lungs. It’s most common in late winter to early spring. Signs and symptoms? There may be no symptoms or mild symptoms that may include: Low-grade fever, headache, mild […]

    Learn More About Fifth Disease (Parvovirus B19)
  • Genital Herpes

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Genital Herpes is a sexually transmitted disease caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV). There are two types of herpes virus that can cause genital herpes, Type 1 (HSV-1) and Type 2 (HSV-2). In the past, HSV-1 was usually known as the cause of cold sores or fever blisters […]

    Learn More About Genital Herpes
  • Giardiasis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Giardiasis is an infection of the upper small intestine caused by an organism called Giardia lamblia that occurs as cysts in the feces. It occurs worldwide and it affects children more often than adults. It is more common in areas of poor sanitation and institutions where children are not […]

    Learn More About Giardiasis
  • Gonorrhea

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is Gonorrhea? Gonorrhea is a bacterial infection that can be serious if not treated early, especially for women. Gonorrhea in women, if left untreated could lead to a painful, long-term condition call PID (pelvic inflammatory disease) and infertility (the inability to have children). You may have heard of this Sexually Transmitted […]

    Learn More About Gonorrhea
  • Group A Streptococcal disease

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Group A Streptococcus (GAS) is a bacteria that is naturally found in many people’s throats and rarely cause serious invasive disease.  Group A Streptococcus can cause a variety of common diseases such as sore throats (“strep throat”), tonsillitis, scarlet fever, and skin infections such as impetigo. Occasionally, the bacteria […]

    Learn More About Group A Streptococcal disease
  • icon for HIV health topic

    HIV

    Aids/HIV Facts Blood and Body exposure for PSS Operators

    Learn More About HIV
  • Hand, Foot, Mouth Disease

    (Coxsackie Virus) What is it? Both hand, foot and mouth disease and herpangina are infections caused by the Coxsackie virus. In Herpangina small red spots that become ulcers appear at the back of the mouth. In hand, foot and mouth disease, the rash can appear as small red, blisters on the hands, feet, mouth or […]

    Learn More About Hand, Foot, Mouth Disease
  • Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS) is a serious and often fatal respiratory disease caused by exposure to the Hantavirus. Prior to 1993, little was known about this illness. Now it is closely monitored by public health and natural resource personnel in Canada and the United States. Hantavirus is found in […]

    Learn More About Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome
  • Hepatitis A

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Hepatitis A is a very contagious virus that causes a liver infection. What does it look like? Hepatitis A disease differs from person to person. Many people, especially children who become infected, have very mild symptoms or none at all. People who do get sick, usually have symptoms of […]

    Learn More About Hepatitis A
  • hepatitis B

    Hepatitis B

    Hepatitis B is a serious infection of the liver and is caused by the hepatitis B virus.

    Learn More About Hepatitis B
  • hepatitis C

    Hepatitis C

    Hepatitis C is a disease that affects the liver and is caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV).

    Learn More About Hepatitis C
  • Histoplasmosis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Histoplasmosis is a yeast disease in humans caused by inhaling spores of a fungus (mould) called Histoplasma capsulatum. H.capsulatum grows in soil throughout the world. The mould seems to grow best in soil having high nitrogen content, especially enriched with bird, chicken or bat droppings. What are the symptoms? […]

    Learn More About Histoplasmosis
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version General Information What is Human Papillomavirus (HPV)? The human papillomaviruses (HPV) are a group of viruses that cause genital warts, cervical abnormalities and cervical, vaginal and anal cancers. There are many different types of HPV, some of which cause warts and some of which cause cervical abnormalities, cervical cancer and other cancers. […]

    Learn More About Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine - Grade 7 Program

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version The Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, Gardasil 9™, is being publicly funded by the Ontario Government for males and females in Grade 7. In Canada the HPV vaccine has been endorsed by the Canadian Cancer Society, Cancer Care ONT, Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada. The vaccination is voluntary. Two separate doses, […]

    Learn More About Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine - Grade 7 Program
  • Impetigo

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Impetigo is a common childhood skin infection that is usually caused by bacteria called group A streptococcal (strep) or Staphylococcus aureus (staph). Infection happens when the bacteria enters the skin through an open area (like a bug bite). Sign and Symptoms? Impetigo usually appears around the mouth, nose or […]

    Learn More About Impetigo
  • Infections and Pregnancy

    Infections during pregnancy can cause severe illness in a mother and also put her unborn baby at risk. For most women there is very little cause for concern. Women are often exposed to infections at a much younger age and therefore have immunity. Note: It is not recommended that all pregnant women exclude themselves from […]

    Learn More About Infections and Pregnancy
  • Infectious Mononucleosis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Infectious mononucleosis is a common viral illness caused by Epstein-Barr virus (EBV). It occurs worldwide and is often diagnosed in the teenage and young adult population due to social behaviours of this age group. In young children the disease is usually very mild and more difficult to diagnose. By […]

    Learn More About Infectious Mononucleosis
  • Influenza (flu)

    Learn More About Influenza (flu)
  • Listeriosis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Listeriosis is a bacterial disease caused by the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes. These bacteria are found naturally in soil, groundwater and plants, and can also be found in feed for horse and cattle and silage. Infected domestic and wild mammals, fowl and people can carry these bacteria. How is it […]

    Learn More About Listeriosis
  • Lyme Disease

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is lyme disease? Lyme disease is a bacterial infection transmitted to humans by a bite from an infected blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis), commonly referred to as deer ticks. What does the tick look like? The blacklegged tick is very small and in the larval stage is about the size of a […]

    Learn More About Lyme Disease
  • Lymphogranuloma Venereum (LGV)

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is LGV? LGV (Lymphogranuloma venereum) is an infection caused by the same bacteria that causes Chlamydia, a common sexually transmitted infection (STI). The infections caused by LGV are often more serious than chlamydia, cause different symptoms, and have different results if left untreated. LGV was a rare STI in Canada, but […]

    Learn More About Lymphogranuloma Venereum (LGV)
  • MRSA

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus) What is MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus)? Staphylococcus aureus are bacteria that are commonly found on people’s skin, in the nose, armpits and groins. About three or four out of every 10 people carry this bacterium in their nose without causing an infection or disease. This is known as the […]

    Learn More About MRSA
  • Measles (German Measles, Rubella)

    What is it? This form of measles is caused by the Rubeola Virus. Your child is more likely to develop Rubeola if they have not been vaccinated or if they travel to other countries without being vaccinated. It occurs most often in the late winter and spring. Signs and Symptoms? Common symptoms include: Fever that […]

    Learn More About Measles (German Measles, Rubella)
  • Meningococcal Meningitis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Meningitis and meningococcemia are two rare but serious infections caused by bacteria called neisseria meningitidis. The bacteria enter the body through the nose and throat and may cause an infection of the bloodstream (meningococcemia) and/or an infection of the covering of the brain and spinal cord(meningitis). Rapid medical assessment and treatment […]

    Learn More About Meningococcal Meningitis
  • Mumps

    Learn More About Mumps
  • Norovirus

    What is Norovirus? Norovirus is a very contagious source of non-bacterial diarrhea and vomiting. The illness can occur at any time of the year but is most common in the fall and winter months. Signs and Symptoms Sudden onset include watery diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, headache, or low grade fever. Can last for 24 […]

    Learn More About Norovirus
  • Oral Cancer

    What is Oral Cancer? Oral cancer is the eighth most common form of cancer. Oral cancer can be fatal. Oral cancer is more common in males over 40 years of age. Know the Signs and Symptoms: Sores on the face, neck or mouth that do not heal within two weeks. Swellings, lumps or bumps on […]

    Learn More About Oral Cancer
  • Osteoporosis

    Osteoporosis is a disease that makes bones thin and weak (Osteoporosis Canada). One in four women over the age of 50 has Osteoporosis and at least one in eight men over 50 also has this disease. As a result of weaker bones, it is easier to fracture a bone while doing simple everyday activities. Fractures […]

    Learn More About Osteoporosis
  • Pertussis (whooping cough)

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Pertussis is an infection in the airways caused by bacteria. Signs and symptoms Symptoms start as a common cold with: Sneezing, runny nose, mild fever and a mild cough The cough gets progressively worse. The cough is severe, repeated and forceful. The coughing periods are often followed by vomiting […]

    Learn More About Pertussis (whooping cough)
  • Pink Eye (conjunctivitis)

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Pinkeye is an infection of the covering of the eyeball. Pink eye is most often caused by viral infections associated with the common cold. It can also be caused by bacterial infections or allergies. Children with bacterial pink eye should take antibiotic drops or ointment. These are not needed […]

    Learn More About Pink Eye (conjunctivitis)
  • Pinworm infection

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Pinworms are tiny, white, thread-like worms that live in the rectum. Signs and Symptoms? The worms crawl out of the anus (bum) at night and lay their eggs on nearby skin. Pinworms can be uncomfortable but they do not cause disease. Some children get very itchy around the anus […]

    Learn More About Pinworm infection
  • Powassan Encephalitis

    Powassan Encephalitis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is Powassan Encephalitis? Powassan encephalitis is a serious but rare tick-borne illness caused by the Powassan virus. The virus was named after the town of Powassan, Ontario where the virus was first isolated in 1958. Where has this virus been found? Although human illness is rare and most infections do not […]

    Learn More About Powassan Encephalitis
  • cat crouching in the grass

    Rabies

      Low Cost Rabies Clinics With the help of Welland and District Humane Society’s Mobile Clinic, Simcoe and District Humane Society will be hosting low cost dog and cat spay/neuter surgeries during 2018 for throughout Norfolk County. Clinic Information: The first of five clinics in Norfolk County will be held April 28, 2018 in Simcoe. […]

    Learn More About Rabies
  • Ringworm

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is ringworm? Ringworm is a group of skin infections caused by mold-like fungi called dermatophytes that live on the dead tissues of the skin, hair, and nails. Children can catch ringworm directly from an infected person, pet or soil. Your child can also catch the infection from hats, combs, clothing or […]

    Learn More About Ringworm
  • Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

    Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever? Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever is a disease caused by the bacteria Rickettsia rickettsii carried in some ticks. Where has this disease been found? The disease has been found in Canada, the United States, Central and South America. It is considered endemic in most parts of the […]

    Learn More About Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
  • Salmonella

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is salmonellosis? Salmonellosis is a food borne infection caused by salmonella bacteria. Typical symptoms include the sudden onset of stomach pain accompanied by headache, diarrhea, fever, loss of appetite, nausea and sometimes vomiting. Dehydration, especially among infants and the elderly, may be severe. Although deaths are usually uncommon, the infection is […]

    Learn More About Salmonella
  • Scabies

    Scabies is a condition caused by tiny insects called mites. Scabies is a nuisance, not an infection. The condition is common in children, but anyone can get it. Scabies has nothing to do with cleanliness. The mites that cause scabies burrow into the skin and cause a very itchy rash. The rash looks like curvy […]

    Learn More About Scabies
  • Scarlet Fever

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Scarlet fever is a bacterial infection caused by B-haemolytic streptococci. Symptoms include a sore throat, tonsillitis, fever and a fine, red skin rash. It is most common in children three to 15 years old. Scarlatina is the mildest and most common form of scarlet fever. What does it look […]

    Learn More About Scarlet Fever
  • Shingles

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is shingles? Shingles is a painful rash due to the same virus that causes chickenpox. After a chickenpox infection, the virus does not leave the body but hides along the nerve paths of the skin. Shingles occurs when the dormant chickenpox virus becomes active again. Who can get shingles? Everyone who […]

    Learn More About Shingles
  • Skin Cancer

    Tanning Bed Sun Sense

    Learn More About Skin Cancer
  • Skin Test

    What is tuberculosis? Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease caused by the tuberculosis germ. TB usually causes disease in the lungs, but may affect other parts of the body. How is it spread? TB is only contagious when diagnosed as active disease in the lungs or larynx. It is spread by coughing. Usually, close prolonged […]

    Learn More About Skin Test
  • Syphilis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Syphilis is a serious disease. It spreads by genital, anal or oral sex with an infected person. The first sign is a painless sore (ulcer) where the germ entered the body. The second stage is a body rash, which comes weeks later. Syphilis affects the whole body. Syphilis symptoms […]

    Learn More About Syphilis
  • Trichomonas Vaginalis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Trichomonas (Trich; Trichomoniasis) is caused by a microscopic parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis. It is usually sexually transmitted but it can also survive for 24 hours on wet towels and bathing suits. This fact explains why trichomonas occasionally occurs without sexual contact. What are the symptoms? Women Men No symptoms. […]

    Learn More About Trichomonas Vaginalis
  • Tuberculosis (TB)

    What is Tuberculosis? Tuberculosis (TB) is caused by bacteria. The bacteria usually attack the lungs, but TB bacteria can attack any part of the body such as the kidney, spine, and brain. If not treated properly, TB disease can be fatal. TB is spread through the air, through coughing or sneezing. Latent TB Infection and […]

    Learn More About Tuberculosis (TB)
  • Tularemia

    Tularemia

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is Tularemia? Tularemia, also known as “rabbit fever,” is a disease caused by the bacteria Francisella tularensis. Tularemia is often considered a rural disease typically found in wild animals, especially rodents, rabbits, muskrats and beavers. Where has this disease been found? Tularemia has been found throughout North America and in many […]

    Learn More About Tularemia
  • Viral Meningitis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Viral meningitis is a disease that causes the tissues that cover the brain and spinal cord to be inflamed. It is caused by an infection with one of several types of viruses. What are the symptoms? Symptoms may not be the same for every person. The more common symptoms […]

    Learn More About Viral Meningitis
  • West Nile Virus

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is West Nile virus? West Nile virus is a virus mainly transmitted to people through the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes transmit the virus after becoming infected by feeding on the blood of birds which carry the virus. Most people infected with the virus have no symptoms or they have […]

    Learn More About West Nile Virus
  • Yersiniosis

    PDF/Printer Friendly Version What is it? Yersiniosis is an illness caused by bacteria called yersinia enterocolitica. These bacteria live in several different kinds of animals, but are mostly found in the throats of pigs. How is it spread? People usually become infected with the bacteria by eating raw or undercooked pork that is contaminated. Drinking […]

    Learn More About Yersiniosis