Communicable Disease Epidemiology Essay

1091 Words Feb 18th, 2015 5 Pages
Epidemiology: Chickenpox (Varicella)
Sheree Criner, RN
Grand Canyon University
NRS 427 V
December 21, 2014

Epidemiology: Chickenpox (Varicella)
As stated by to Centers for Disease Control (CDC) (CDC, 2013); chickenpox is a very contagious disease caused by the varicella-zoster virus (VZV). VZV causes a primary infection that is characterized by a rash with macules, papules, and then vesicles. Other symptoms include fever, lethargy, and pruritus. VZV then remains in the body on the sensory nerve ganglia and can reactivate as at a future time as shingles (Herpes Zoster). Chickenpox is spread through airborne, droplet, and contact with infected fluids. Chickenpox is treated by treating the symptoms, and preventing
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Prevention is the best defense against this agent, so the most effective way to break the chain of infection is prevention through vaccination.
Determinants of Health
The determinants of health include the social and economic environment, the physical environment, and the person’s individual characteristics and behaviors (WHO, n.d.). Chickenpox can have serious implications, especially in babies, adults, and people with compromised immune systems. Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), and pregnancy, are biological health status disparities that contribute to developing chickenpox and increase the risk for complication. Complications such as dehydration, pneumonia, bleeding problems, encephalitis, cerebellar ataxia, bacterial infections of the skin, and sepsis can occur. Access to healthcare for treatment of preventative vaccination is impacted by socioeconomic status. The ability to pay for or have transportation to access healthcare can make persons vulnerable to disease. Furthermore, individual health behaviors contribute to patient adherence to treatment or preventive vaccination. Some patients have fears, or concerns about the safety of vaccination, or have cultural or spiritual beliefs that don’t allow vaccination.
All determinants of health contribute to the development of this disease by increasing vulnerability to transmission of the disease.
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