An Infectious Diseases Specialist is a doctor who has extensive training in all kinds of infections, including those caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites, and is qualified as an expert in the diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases.

Clostridium difficile 

Colitis is the inflammation of the colon caused by the bacteria Clostridium difficile. This can cause various symptoms including: fever, pain in the abdomen, diarrhea, or bloating, and requires a medical diagnosis through lab tests or imaging.

Clostridium difficile colitis is the disruption of normal, healthy bacteria in the colon, often from long term antibiotic use. It spreads by contact with a contaminated object or surface, and can also be transmitted from person to person by spores.

It can cause severe damage to the colon and even be fatal so it requires specialist medical treatment.

Hepatitis 

Hepatitis is inflammation of the tissue of the liver. Some people have no symptoms but others can have jaundice (yellow discoloration of the skin and whites of the eyes), or develop vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, or poor appetite.

There are different types of hepatitis dependent of the cause, Viral, Alcoholic, or Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).

Hepatitis may be temporary (acute) or long term (chronic) depending on whether it lasts for less than or more than six months. Acute hepatitis can sometimes resolve on its own, or it may progress to chronic hepatitis, or rarely result in acute liver failure. Over time the chronic form may progress to scarring of the liver, liver failure of cancer of the liver.

Endocarditis 

The endocardium is the inner lining of the heart muscle, which also covers the heart valves. When the lining of the heart becomes damaged, bacteria from the blood stream can become lodged on the heart valves or heart lining. The resulting infection is known as endocarditis.

If not discovered and treated, endocarditis can permanently damage the heart muscle, especially the valves. For the heart to work properly, all four valves must be functioning well.

Patients suspected of having endocarditis are usually admitted to hospital, with an Infectious Diseases Specialists guiding their treatment.

Dr Raquel Cowan

I provide specialist medical management of general and complex infections including Endocarditis, Prosthetic infections, HIV, Hepatitis, and Clostridium Difficile, through an empathetic and dedicated practice, providing patients with an understanding of their disease in order to allow them to be involved in their own healthcare.

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