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What is Enteric Fever?

Typhoid fever or enteric fever is a bacterial infection caused by the bacterium Salmonella typhi. It causes high-grade fever, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.

Typhoid can also cause inflammation of your intestines. Therefore, if you have any symptoms of typhoid, you should visit the healthcare provider soon. To get an expert opinion, you can visit the Internal medicine Doctor in Lahore. Typhoid, if left untreated, can lead to life-threatening complications.

Typhoid spreads through drinking contaminated water and the fecal-oral route. Sometimes the person has typhoid without any symptoms. They can also become a carrier to spread it. Therefore if you travel to an area where typhoid is prevalent, you must boil the water before drinking or buy bottled mineral water to drink.

To treat typhoid, your healthcare providers will prescribe you antibiotics that can help kill the bacteria. Make sure you take those antibiotics as prescribed by your physician.

When you skip the doses or do not take it in the right quality, or leave-taking it midway, it can result in antibiotic resistance- a condition that makes it even more difficult to treat. When antibiotic resistance occurs, the antibiotics that were acting first are not even helpful. Therefore take your antibiotic course seriously and follow it.

To diagnose typhoid fever, your healthcare providers will perform a blood test or a stool test.

What Are The Symptoms of Enteric Fever?

When the bacteria enters your body, the symptoms show up in 6 to 30 days. The two common symptoms of typhoid fever are rashes and fever. The fever due to typhoid is generally high; the condition is therefore also known as enteric fever.

The rashes associated with typhoid fever are red rose-colored spots. However, it may not occur in every person. Other common symptoms of typhoid are:

  • Headache
  • Constipation
  • Abdominal pain
  • Lethargy and fatigue

Sometimes it might also cause vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration. However, that happens rarely.

In some cases, enteric fever can lead to perforation of the bowel. It can be a life-threatening condition. Bowel perforation can lead to peritonitis- infection, and inflammation of the peritoneum- the lining of the abdominal cavity. It rarely happens in some people but is a life-threatening condition. Therefore you should not take it lightly. If you have symptoms of typhoid, you should not take it lightly and visit the doctor frequently.

Another bacteria known as Salmonella enterica can also cause a parathyroid infection that has symptoms similar to enteric fever. However, it is not that severe.

What Is The Treatment For Typhoid?

The only medicine that works for typhoid is an antibiotic. Most commonly in adults and non-pregnant women, ciprofloxacin is used. Sometimes ceftriaxone- a cephalosporin antibiotic can also be used.

Other than antibiotics, you should drink plenty of water. But make sure that the water you drink is clean and pure. In rare cases when the bowel is perforated, your healthcare providers may advise surgery.

How Can You Prevent Typhoid Infection?

To prevent typhoid infection, the following tips can work:

  • If you live in a typhoid prevalent area, get yourself vaccinated against it.
  • Eat and drink from reliable places. Make sure the food is not cooked in contaminated water.
  • It is better to peel off fruits and vegetables before eating.
  • If you live in a typhoid prevalent area, boil the water first before drinking. And do not drink tap water or untreated water.
  • Before cooking food, make sure to wash your hands properly with soap and water.
  • Before eating anything, wash your hands properly with soap and water.

The Bottom Line

Typhoid can spread from one person to another upon direct contact with the faeces. If a person who has got typhoid cooks the food and does not wash their hands, they may transmit it to others. Therefore it is essential to wash hands before cooking food and eating. If you have any symptoms of typhoid, you should visit the healthcare provider as soon as possible.

Typhoid, if left untreated, can lead to life-threatening complications. Therefore you should not delay your visit to the healthcare provider. To get an expert opinion, you can visit the Best Internal Medicine Specialist in Karachi.

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