A parasite, found in almost all animals.
Under cooked meat, especially pork, lamb, and wild game (PubMed), and soil contaminated with cat poo on raw fruits and vegetables.
Eating under cooked food > cat excrement; occasionally passed on in transplanted organs. There were cases in France linked to imported horse meat; "Wilber, I am so sorry."
"We evaluated 148 case patients with recent T. gondii infection and 413 control patients. In multivariate analysis, an elevated risk of recent T. gondii infection was associated with the following factors: eating raw ground beef; eating rare lamb; eating locally produced cured, dried, or smoked meat; working with meat; drinking unpasteurized goat’s milk (ick); and having 3 or more kittens (owning, not giving birth to). Eating raw oysters, clams, or mussels was significant in a separate model among persons asked this question (PubMed)."
Acute disease: usually asymptomatic, it can febrile, malaise, night sweats, myalgias, sore throat, maculopapular rash, hepatosplenomegaly disease with lots of lymphadenopathy. Sort of mono without the exudative pharyngitis and monospot.
Reactivation Disease: CNS mass lesions in HIV patient with CD4 < 200 and transplant patients. Myocarditis, pneumonia and eye involvement can also occur in these patients as well.
It can reactivate in patients who receive myeloablative conditioning and with high-dose total body irradiation for stem cell transplant (PubMed).
Bad Driving: People who are toxoplasma seropositive have more car accidents than those who are not, except for those who have RhD positive blood. Really: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2334/9/72. I wonder if I can use that to get out of a speeding ticket. Your honor, its not my fault, it’s the toxo.
And seropositive kids may not be as good at math (PubMed).
CNS disease. Pyrimethamine 200-mg loading dose then 50-75 mg qd PLUS either Sulfadiazine 1-1.5 g q6h
OR IV 3-5 mg (trimethoprim component)/kg q6h
OR dapsone po 100 mg qd.
Once therapy is complete, secondary prophylaxis should be continued indefinitely (in HIV patients on HAART, if CD4 > 200 and viral load <50 for a year, can stop prophylaxis).
I am not going to give advice for treatment in pregnancy, here is the review (PubMed).
In HIV, CNS mass lesions are usually between toxo and CNS lymphoma, Toxo tends to be multiple and seropositive; lymphoma tends to be single and sero negative. If single lesion and seropositive, patients should improve clinically in 10 days or so on therapy, if they do not, or worsen, strongly consider biopsy. There is also an interesting literature showing an association between toxoplasmosis and schizophrenia. Really. Or so the voices tell me.
ICD9 Codes (Soon to be supplanted by ICD10)
Toxoplasmosis (acquired) 130.9; with pneumonia 130.4; disseminated (multisystemic) 130.8; multiple sites 130.8; multisystemic disseminated 130.8; specified site NEC 130.7.