The discovery that infectious diseases thrived because of our lack of knowledge in the mechanics of them, which gave way to the growing interest and need in controlling such infectious diseases. The complete eradication of any current problematic disease is virtually impossible because of the many factors that may or may not be in our control. But we have the knowledge and technology to try and reduce the incidences of many infectious diseases.
During 19th century America, the increase of population in urban areas was coupled with infectious diseases because the practice of sufficient sanitation services and hygiene was unfamiliar to the masses. Conditions such as .
" overcrowding in poor housing served by inadequate or nonexistent public water supplies and waste-disposal systems resulted in repeated outbreaks of cholera, dysentery, TB, typhoid fever, influenza, yellow fever, and malaria1.".
Eventually, in the 1930s through the 1950s, collaborative efforts from the local, state and federal governments enforced the concept of "public health" and awareness through improvements, such as clean drinking water, proper sewage and wasted disposal, water treatment, and education in hygiene1. A significance decline in acquiring diseases resulted from the aforementioned improvements to the United States. Diseases that ailed the public before were becoming less common.
Sulfa drugs were once used to inhibit the growth of bacteria2 but effectiveness and number of side effects were less than promising in the pursuit of disease control. Researched by microbiologist Selman Waksman, the development and use of antibiotics, such as penicillin or streptomycin, for medical use in the 1940s replaced the use of sulfa1. They became widely used for the prevention and treatment of an assortment of diseases: viral, fungal, and parasitic diseases. Although drug resistance in many people has followed the benefits of antibiotics and other antimicrobial medicines, it leads to the question whether antibiotics will be helpful in the future for others.