Filed Under: Health & Science, Lifestyle | Posted: 04/03/2008 at 9:04PM
Comments | Region: Philippines
Typhoid fever is caused by Salmonella typhi / S. typhi bacteria which only affect humans. The illness it causes may be mild or severe.
Signs and Symptoms of Typhoid Fever
Symptoms of typhoid fever usually develop 1 to 3 weeks after exposure. Symptoms include:
- a sustained fever as high as 39° to 40° C
- constipation or diarrhea and abdominal discomfort
- loss of appetite
- enlarged spleen and liver
- In some cases, there is a rash of flat, rose colored spots
How does typhoid fever spread?
- If food is prepared by a healthy carrier of typhoid fever, or is not cooked well, and is contaminated with S. typhi bacteria.
- When food or water is contaminated by human waste (urine and feces) carrying S. typhi bacteria gets into the water you use for drinking or washing food.
- One can get typhoid fever by eating or drinking food beverages that have been handled by a person who is shedding S. typhi bacteria.
- If you have contact with someone who does not wash hands after using the comfort room and is carrying the disease.
Preventing typhoid fever
- Boil drinking water. Once water boils, extends boiling 2 or more minutes.
- Avoid eating street food.
- Wash hands with soap and water after using the toilet and before eating or handling food.
- Keep your surroundings clean to prevent breeding of flies.
- Prepare food carefully. Cook food well and always use food covers to prevent flies and other insects from contaminating the food.
- Wash all vegetables and fruits thoroughly, especially those are eaten raw.
- You can also try 2 vaccines recommended by the World Health Organization for the prevention of typhoid: these are live, oral Ty21a vaccine (sold as Vivotif Berna) and the injectible Vi capsular polysaccharide vaccine (sold as Typhim Vi).
How do you know if you have typhoid fever?
To be sure if you have typhoid have your stool or blood tested for the presence of S. typhi.