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Typhoid fever :Hygiene Will Save You

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Typhoid fever

By Rawlings Oke Godwin

On 9 Jan, 2022

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Typhoid fever, diarrhoea, and vomiting are all symptoms of a bacterial infection caused by Salmonella typhi. It has the potential to be fatal. Salmonella typhi is the bacteria that causes it.

The bacteria is spread by contaminated food and water, and it is commoner in areas where handwashing is not poorly or not practised.

 How Does It spread

The bacteria is spread by contaminated food and water, and it is commoner in areas where handwashing is not poorly or not practised.  It can also be spread by carriers who are unaware that they are carrying the germs.

It can also be spread by carriers who are unaware that they are carrying the germs.


How Common Is It?

Every year, around 5,700 cases are reported in the United States, with 75 percent of these cases beginning while travelling internationally. Typhoid affects around 21.5 million people worldwide each year.


What exactly is typhoid?

Typhoid fever is a bacterial infection caused by Salmonella typhimurium (S. Typhi).

infected humans have the bacterium in their intestines and bloodstream. It is passed on between people through direct contact with an infected person’s faeces.

Because no animals carry the disease, transmission is always between humans.

Typhoid can be fatal in one out of every five cases if left untreated. Fewer than 4 out of 100 cases are fatal after therapy.



Typhoid is caused by the bacteria S. Typhi and is spread by infected faeces-contaminated food, drinks, and drinking water. If infected water is used to wash fruits and vegetables, it might spread the disease.

Some persons are asymptomatic typhoid carriers, meaning they have the bacterium but have no symptoms. However, others carry the bacterium even after their symptoms have faded. The condition can reappear at any time.

People who test positive as carriers may be barred from working with young ones or the elderly until medical tests confirm that they are free. This is because the extremes of ages usually have immune challenges.


 The cycle

S. Typhi enters through the mouth and stays in the intestine for 1 to 3 weeks. It then gets into the bloodstream after passing through the gut wall.

It spreads from the bloodstream to various tissues and organs. S. Typhi may dwell within the host’s cells, unnoticed by the immune system, the host’s immune system has little ability to fight back.



The presence of S. Typhi in blood, stool, urine, or bone marrow samples is used to diagnose typhoid.

Symptoms Of Typhoid Fever

  • Symptoms usually appear six to thirty days following contact with the pathogen.
  • Fever and rash are the two most common symptoms. Typhoid fever is very severe, with temperatures rising to 104 degrees Fahrenheit  / 39 to 40oC over several days.
  • Rose-coloured patches, mainly on the neck and belly, characterise the rash, which does not affect every patient.

Other signs and symptoms include:

  • weakness
  • discomfort in the abdomen
  • constipation
  • headaches
  • Also, Confusion, diarrhoea, and vomiting are rare symptoms, but they are not usually severe.
  • The bowel might become perforated if left untreated in severe situations.
  • Peritonitis, an infection of the tissue lining the inside of the abdomen, has been documented to be fatal in between 5 and 62 percent of cases


Paratyphoid ver is a variant. However, symptoms are similar to typhoid but are less likely to be lethal.



  • Antibiotics are the sole effective treatment for typhoid. Ciprofloxacin (for non-pregnant individuals) and ceftriaxone are the most regularly prescribed antibiotics.
  • Apart from medications, it is critical to rehydrate by drinking enough water.
  • Surgery may be needed if there is intestinal perforation.


Antibiotic resistance in typhoid

Antibiotic resistance is currently a source of worry for S. Typhi, as it is for a number of other bacterial infections.

This has an effect on the medications available to treat typhoid. Typhoid has developed resistance to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole and ampicillin in recent years.

Ciprofloxacin, one of the most important typhoid treatments, is also having problems. Salmonella typhimurium resistance rates is estimated to be over 35% in several investigations.



Typhoid cases are more common in countries with limited access to clean water and washing facilities.


Infection prevention

Typhoid is spread through contact with contaminated human faeces and the consumption of infected human faeces. This can happen if you drink contaminated water or handle contaminated food.

The following are some general guidelines to follow when travelling to help reduce the risk of contracting typhoid:

  • Drink clean water with carbonation, if possible.
  • If clean water is unavailable, bring water to a rolling boil for at least one minute before drinking.
  • Avoid consuming anything that has been touched by another person.  Always wash your fruits before consumption.
  • Eat only food that is still hot and avoid dining at street food stands.
  • Drinks should not contain ice.
  • Stay away from raw fruits and vegetables, peel them yourself, and don’t eat the peel.


Simple Facts

  • Even if you no longer have typhoid symptoms, you could still be carrying the bacterium.
  • This makes it difficult to eradicate the disease since carriers who have lost their symptoms may be less cautious when washing their hands or socialising with others.
  • Travellers to Africa, South America, and Asia, particularly India, should exercise caution.


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