Typhoid fever: Symptoms, Treatment, Causes and Prevention

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Typhoid fever is an acute (experienced to a severe or intense degree) illness linked with fever caused by the Salmonella enterica serotype Typhi bacteria. It is also caused by Salmonella paratyphi bacteria which is usually less severe illness. This is one of the communicable disease which can be transferred easily by bacteria contaminated water or food. Occasionally, it can also be transferred through direct contact with someone who is infected.

People with acute illness can contaminate the surrounding water supply or food through stool, urine and saliva which contains a high concentration of the bacteria and are then spread to other people in the area who consumes it. Washing fruit and vegetables can spread it, if contaminated water is used. The bacteria can survive for weeks in water or dried sewage.




About 5%-10% of people become carriers of the bacteria after the acute illness. Others suffer a very mild illness that goes unrecognized. They might become long-term carriers of the bacteria even though they have no symptoms and be the source of new outbreaks of typhoid fever after years also.

Sympton

After the intake of contaminated food or water, the Salmonella bacteria goes to small intestine and enter the blood. The bacteria are carried by white blood cells in the liver and bone marrow, where they multiply and re-enter the bloodstream. People develop symptoms, including fever, at this point. Bacteria invade the gallbladder, biliary system, and the lymphatic tissue of the bowel. Here, they multiply in high numbers. The bacteria pass into the intestinal tract and can be identified in stool samples. Typhoid is diagnosed by detecting the presence of S.typhi via blood, stool, urine, or bone marrow sample.

typhoid test

The process of incubating bacteria is usually 1-2 weeks, and the illness can occur 3-4 weeks.

Symptoms include:

  • Poor appetite – your desire to eat is reduced
  • Headaches
  • Muscle pain originates in any part of the body
  • High Fever as high as 104 degrees Farenheit and increases more on evening time
  • Lack of energy and enthusiasm, Weakness
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomitting
  • Chest congestion and abdominal pain
  • The fever becomes constant
  • Rashes (rose-colored spots) particularly on the neck and abdomen




Patient condition seems to be improved usually in the third and fourth week for those without complications. About 10% of people have recurrent symptoms after feeling better for one to two weeks. Relapses(deteriorate after a period of improvement) are actually more common in individuals treated with antibiotics.

Treatments

Typhoid fever is treated with antibiotics which kill the Salmonella bacteria. Those who become chronically ill (about 5%-10% of those infected), can be treated with prolonged antibiotics. Often, remove the gallbladder, the part of serious infection, will provide a cure.

The most commonly used antibiotics are ciprofloxacin (for non-pregnant adults) and ceftriaxone. Other than antibiotics, it is important to rehydrate by drinking adequate water.

Prevention

  • Drink safe and healthy bottled water, preferably carbonated.
  • If bottled water is not possible, ensure water is boiled at least two minute before consuming.
  • Beware of eating anything that has been handled by someone else.
  • Avoid eating at street food stalls, and only eat food that is still hot.
  • Do not have ice in drinks.
  • Avoid raw fruit and vegetables without proper washing.
  • Peel fruit yourself, and do not eat the peel.
  • Wear Mask and gloves if need to go to dirty places.

References: WebMD

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