Law Topics >  Injuries > Infections

A microorganism that invades the body may cause an infection. However, not all microorganisms are harmful, in fact most are not. Many microorganisms live on and in the human body with little or no noticeable effect. As a matter of fact, you have many microorganisms living in your nose, mouth, intestines, and elsewhere right now. Some of these microorganisms actually perform beneficial tasks including killing other harmful microorganisms.

Sometimes harmful microorganisms gain the upper hand on the beneficial ones. When this happens an infection may follow. In order to cause infection, these harmful microorganisms must enter the body and attach themselves to otherwise normal human cells. They then multiply, spreading the infection. At this point the body reacts by sending white blood cells to the infected area. The white blood cells attack the infection.

Some people who have suppressed immune systems, such as the elderly or those with AIDS or other immune compromising conditions, are more susceptible to infections as the invading microorganisms may overwhelm their natural defenses.