Medical Term:

toxoplasmosis

Pronunciation: tok′sō-plaz-mō′sis

Definition: Disease caused by the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which can produce abortion in sheep, encephalitis in mink, and a variety of syndromes in humans. Prenatally acquired human infection can result in the presence of abnormalities such as microcephalus or hydrocephalus at birth, the development of jaundice with hepatosplenomegaly or meningoencephalitis in early childhood, or the delayed appearance of ocular lesions such as chorioretinitis in later childhood. Postnatally acquired human infections typically remain subclinical; if clinical disease does occur, symptoms include fever, lymphadenopathy, headache, myalgia, and fatigue, with eventual recovery, except in the immunocompromised patient in whom fatal encephalitis often develops.

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