Toxoplasmosis

Toxoplasmosis (toxo) is an infection caused by a single-celled parasite called Toxoplasma gondii. The infection is most commonly acquired from contact with cats and their feces or with raw or undercooked meat.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that more than 60 million people in the United States may carry the Toxoplasmaparasite, but very few have symptoms because a healthy immune system usually keeps the parasite from causing illness.

What is the cause of toxoplasmosis

There are only a few ways to acquire the parasite that causes toxoplasmosis:

  • Contact with cats or cat feces
  • Eating raw or undercooked meat
  • Drinking raw milk from an infected goat (Goats can be an intermediate host for the parasite.)
  • Organ transplantation or blood transfusion from an infected person

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