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Infection Control: Breaking the Chain of Infection

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microorganisms
living organisms too small to be seen with the naked eye
pathogens
Microbes that cause disease
nonpathogens
microorganisms that are part of the normal flora of the body and are beneficial in maintaining certain body processes.
aerobic
requires oxygen to live
anearobic
no oxygen is required
asepsis
absence of pathogens
antisepsis
the process of inhibiting the growth and multiplication of microorganisms
sterile
free of all microorganisms, pathogenic and nonpathogenic
contaminated
organisms and pathogens are present
disinfection
this is a process that destroys or kills pathogenic organisms (example: bleach)
sterilization
a process that destroys all microorganisms, including spores and viruses (example: chemicals, radiation, gas)
nosocomical infection
one acquired by an individual in a health-care facility such as hospital
opportunistic infection
Infections that occur when the body's defenses are weakened
bacteria
one-celled microorganisms, some of which are beneficial and some of which cause disease (tuberculosis, pertussis, strep throat)
protozoa
These are one-celled animal-like organisms often found in decayed materials animal or bird feces, insect bites and contaminated water, pathogenic and cause diseases such as malaria and aftrican sleeping sickness
fungi
These are simple, plant-like organisms that live on dead organic matter. Yeast and mold are two common forms that can be pathogenic. They cause diseases such as ringworm, athletes foot and thrush
rickettsiae
These are parasitic microorganisms, which means they cannot live outside the cells of another living organism . They are found in fleas , lice, ticks and mites.
viruses
These are the smallest microorganisms, visible only using an electron microscope.
They cannot reproduce unless they are inside another living cell. They are spread by blood and body secretions.
They are difficult to kill by disinfectants and they are not affected by antibiotics. They may cause diseases such as chicken pox, herpes, influenza
PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
A barrier between a person and pathogens; includes gloves, gowns, masks, goggles, and face shields.
standard precautions
practices used in health care facilities to prevent the spread of infection
chain of infection
Factors that must be present for disease to occur
causative agent
The pathogen responsible for causing an infection; also called the infectious agent.
reservoir
anything (a person or animal or plant or substance) in which an infectious agent normally lives and multiplies
portal of exit
a way for the causative agent to be released from the reservoir (urine, feces, saliva, blood, tears, mucous discharge, draining wounds: in the body)
mode of transmission
way in which it can be transmitted to another reservoir or host where it can live
portal of entry
a way for the causative agent to enter a new reservoir or host
susceptible host
A person likely to get an infection or disease.