Infection and Disease


Communicable Diseases

  • Communicable diseases are those that can spread from person to person or between animals and people.
  • They can be caused by things like bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi.
  • They're sometimes described as contagious or infectious diseases.
  • Measles and Malaria are examples of communicable diseases.
1 of 7

Non Communicable Diseases

  • Non-Communicable diseases are those that cannot spread between people or between animals and people.
  • They generally last for a long time and get worse slowly.
  • Asthma, cancer and coronary heart disease are examples of non-communicable diseases.
2 of 7

Interaction of Diseases

  • People who have problems with their immune system (the system that your body uses to fight off infection) have an increased chance of suffering from communicable diseases such as influenza (flu), because their body is less likely to be able to defend itself against the pathogen that causes the disease.
3 of 7

Interaction of Diseases

  • Some types of cancer can be triggered by infectiob by certain viruses.
  • For example, infection with some types of hepatitis virus can cause long term infections in the liver, where the virus lives in the cells. This can lead to an increased chance of developing liver cancer.
  • Another example is the infection of HPV (human papilloma virus), which can cause cervical cancer in women.
4 of 7

Interaction of Diseases

  • Immmune system reactions in the body caused by infection by a pathogen can sometimes trigger allergic reactions such as skin rashes or worsen symptoms of ashma for ashma sufferers.
  • Mental health issues such as depression can be triggered when someone is suffering from severe physical health problems, particularly if they have an impact on the person's ability to carry out everyday activities or if they affect the person's life expectancy.
5 of 7

Factors affecting your health

  • Your life situation - whether you have easy access to medicine to treat illness, or whether you have access to things that prevent you from getting ill in the first place.
  • The stress you are under - being constantly under pressure can lead to health issues.
  • Whether or not you have a good, balanced diet that provides your body with everything it needs and in the right amounts. A poor diet can affect your physical and mental health.
6 of 7

Non-Communicable Diseases Human Cost

  • The human cost of non-communicable diseases is obvious. Tens of millions of people around the world die from non-communicable diseases per year.
  • People with these diseases may have a lower quality of life or a shorter lifespan. This not only affects the sufferers themselves, but their loved ones as well.
7 of 7


No comments have yet been made

Similar Biology resources:

See all Biology resources »See all Microbes and disease resources »