Precautions and Treatment for Typhoid


A bacterial infection caused by the bacterium Salmonella typhii is called Typhoid. The common symptoms include fever, vomiting, and diarrhea. If untreated, it can even be fatal. The typhoid infection can occur through contaminated drinking water and food. It mostly occurs in children who do not wash their hands properly after using the washroom. Globally, about 21.5 million people get typhoid infections every year. If detected early, typhoid can be treated successfully with the help of antibiotics, but if not treated well, it can also become fatal.

The bacteria Salmonella typhii thrives in the human intestinal tract and circulatory system. It spread by direct contact with the infected person or through feces. Animals are not the carrier of this disease, therefore transmission always occurs from human to another human. For medical and health consultation related to typhoid, diabetes or any other medical problem you Sprint Medical Clinic super speciality doctors are always ready to consult you online or offline both you can simply book an appointment with a doctor online from home.

The bacteria Salmonella typhii enters through the oral route and proliferates in the intestines for about one to three weeks. After its full growth and proliferation in the intestine, it moves to the bloodstream by penetrating through the intestinal walls. Once it reaches the blood, it can easily spread to other organs and tissues. S. Typhii lives inside the cells; therefore, the body’s immune system has little or no role in protecting the body against this infection. The disease is diagnosed by finding out the existence of the bacteria in the blood, urine, stool, or bone marrow sample.

Precautions for Typhoid:

  • The first and foremost precaution for not getting typhoid is to drink only boiled water as boiling temperature (100 ºC) kills most of the microorganisms.
  • Avoid drinking water at unknown/outside places where you do not know where the water is coming from.
  • Avoid fruit juices and other cold beverages from roadside vendors or any other such place.
  • Make it a habit to carry your own water bottle when stepping out of the house.
  • Along with water, try to avoid eating roadside/outdoor foods, especially uncooked foods or foods that contain lots of water as if contaminated water is used for the processing/preparation of the dish, it can cause typhoid. Apart from that, if the person who is preparing the dish already has typhoid and he does not maintain personal hygiene, then too, the bacteria can get transferred to the food.
  • Regularly clean water tanks and water purifiers at home to inhibit the growth of microorganisms.
  • Be very careful while using a public toilet as most of the disease spread through unhygienic public places. Make sure to wash hands properly with soap and water after using a public toilet.
  • Avoid having physical contact/intimacy with a diseased person or someone who has recently recovered from it.

Treatment for Typhoid: 

  • The doctors usually prescribe an antibiotic course for treating typhoid and in most cases, it can be treated at home, but in some severe cases, the patient may need to get admitted to the hospital.
  • If the typhoid fever is detected at the earlier stage, then a home treatment with an antibiotic course of 7-14 days is prescribed.
  • The doctors prescribe some tests in which the blood/urine/stool sample is taken and tested for the presence and determination of the strain of bacteria that has caused the infection. This is done to prescribe a suitable antibiotic according to the strain of the disease-causing organism.
  • The typhoid symptoms should start suppressing after two to three days of taking the antibiotics. But it is really important to complete the whole antibiotic course to get rid of the bacteria completely and to not make it resistant to the antibiotics.
  • The patient should take complete bed rest, drink lots of liquids, and have regular meals. If the patient is unable to take three large meals then divide it into more frequent smaller meals.
  • The patient should also maintain personal hygiene to reduce the spread of infection to others. The hands should be regularly washed with warm water and soap.
  • In some cases, the symptoms may return back which is known as relapse. The symptoms usually return after one week of antibiotic treatment. This time, the symptoms are generally milder and last for a shorter period but further treatment with antibiotics is recommended.
  • After the suppression of the symptoms, most of the people can return back to the workplace/school except for children under five years of age, old age people, or people whose work requires handling and processing of eatables. These people can only return to work only when the test reports are clear with the complete absence of bacteria in the body. 
  • Doctors may also recommend hospitalization if the patients have severe typhoid symptoms such as high fever, severe diarrhea, vomiting, and bloated stomach. For precaution, children suffering from typhoid are usually admitted to the hospital.
  • In hospitals, along with antibiotic injections, nutrients and fluids are also injected directly intravenously into the body.
  • The hospital treatment is found effective for most people and their condition gets better after three to five days of treatment. But it may take a few weeks to recover fully and get discharged from the hospital.
  • After the symptoms have suppressed to a greater extent, it is advisable to get another blood/urine/stool test to check whether still some S. typhii bacteria are left in the body or not. If the test results are again positive then the patient may have become a carrier of typhoid disease. It is advised to extend the antibiotic course for twenty-eight days to flush out all the bacteria.
  • Until and unless the test results are negative, it is advised for the patient to avoid cooking/preparing/handling of food items and maintaining the proper hygiene.

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