This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Nocardiosis is a rare infectious disorder, that affects the brain, skin, and/or lungs. It occurs mainly in people with a weakened immune system but can affect anyone, and about one-third of infected people do not have any immune problems.. This condition usually starts in the lungs and can spread to other body organs. Affected individuals usually experience problems with their lungs (chest pain, coughing up blood, fevers), brain (headaches and seizures), and skin (skin infections, ulcers, and abscesses). Nocardiosis is caused by a bacteria of the family (genus) known as Nocardia which have different species (types). Nocardia bacteria are able to cause localized or systemic disease in humans and animals. The Nocordia bacteria are able to spread to any organ, specially the central nervous system (brain and spine), and have a tendency to recur or progress despite appropriate treatment. The nocardia bacteria are found in soil around the world. People contract this disease by either inhaling contaminated dust or if soil containing nocardia bacteria get into an open wound. People with nocardiosis may need to take multiple antibiotics given for several months—or even up to a year or more.
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