...This Deadly Enemy Called Typhoid
Improper hygiene and sanitation aid the fast spread of diseases and infection, and infection spreads faster than fire. A common infection that arises from improper sanitation and hygiene is typhoid fever. Typhoid fever is a life-threatening illness caused by the bacterium Salmonella typhi.
In Nigeria typhoid affects both children and adults and if not treated properly could be fatal. It is largely a disease of developing nations due to their poor standard of hygiene and unavailability of potable water. It is transmitted faecal-orally through contaminated food and water.
Typhoid fever is highly contagious. An infected person can pass the bacteria out of their body in their stools (faeces) or, less commonly, in their urine.
If someone else eats food or drinks water that has been contaminated with a small amount of infected faeces or urine, they can become infected with the bacteria and develop typhoid fever. For instance if a person that is infected with the bacteria uses the restroom and didn’t wash his or her hands afterwards, dips her hand into a communal food. There is every tendency that the bacteria are being passed on into the food, thereby making the food contaminated.
You can get typhoid fever if you eat food or drink beverages that have been handled by a person who is shedding Salmonella typhi or if sewage contaminated with Salmonella typhi bacteria gets into the water you use for drinking or washing food. Therefore, typhoid fever is more common in areas of the world where hand washing is less frequent and water is likely to be contaminated with sewage.
Once Salmonella typhi bacteria are eaten or drunk, they multiply and spread into the bloodstream. The body reacts with fever and other signs and symptoms. Common symptoms of typhoid fever includes; a high temperature that can reach 39–40°C (103–104°F), stomach pain, headache and constipation or diarrhoea.
Children and younger adults are thought to be most at risk of developing typhoid fever. This may be because their immune system which is the body’s natural defence against infection and illness is still developing. Hence it is very important we ensure that children and young adults food are prepared under standard sanitized conditions.
Two basic actions can protect you from typhoid fever: Avoid risky foods and drinks and get vaccinated against typhoid fever.
• Ensure you boil or filter water before drinking. Use clean water in cooking; you could even boil the water before using it to cook.
• Avoid lollies that are sold in nylon or made locally, unless you are sure it was made in a sanitized environment.
• Eat foods that have been thoroughly cooked and that are still hot and steaming.
• Wash vegetables with salt and clean water.
• When you eat raw fruit or vegetables that can be peeled, peel them yourself. (Wash your hands with soap first.) Do not eat the peelings.
• Avoid foods and beverages from street vendors. It is difficult for food to be kept clean on the street, and many people get sick from food bought from street vendors.
It may surprise you, but watching what you eat and drink is as important as being vaccinated. This is because the vaccines are not completely effective. Avoiding risky foods will also help protect you from other illnesses diarrhoea, cholera, dysentery, and hepatitis A.
The development of antibiotic treatments and several vaccines have presented the possibility of worldwide eradication of typhoid fever. The most frequently used antibiotic is ciprofloxacin and Ciprotab is mostly used in Nigeria. What makes Fidson brand of Ciprotab more unique is the softlet technology. The gelatine coat improves ease of swallowing thereby increasing patience compliance. Also the gelatine coat offers protection, making drug stable under storage. This softlet technology mask the taste, leaves it odourless and makes the drug difficult to counterfeit. For typhoid fever treatment 500 mg twice daily is the normal prescription unless stated otherwise by the doctor.
Last Updated: 30-Jun-2016 07:39 PM