|I thought I could avoid toxoplasmosis by avoiding contact
with cat faeces. But the other day I overheard someone at
the baby class saying you can catch it from raw meat. I
work in a butchery and I am horrified.
To avoid toxoplasmosis, limiting contact with your cat is
preferable. The parasite can be transmitted from animals and
is treatable with drugs. However if you contract toxoplasmosis
without realising it, your baby can be severely affected.
For the mother the symptoms of infection can range from no
symptoms to mild flu-like effects. However, for the baby,
this parasite can be responsible for a range of problems,
from blindness to mental retardation. For this reason it is
worth taking precautions such as wearing gloves when gardening
or cleaning the cat’s litter box.
In our modern world, toxoplasmosis infections from meat
are rare, especially in cities. However, it is still advisable
to only eat well cooked animal proteins, including meat,
and to avoid raw meat sources such as biltong. If you work
in a butchery you just need to take extra care not to handle
raw meat with your bare hands. Gloves are essential.