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What causes cholera?

 Cholera is a deadly disease. Its symptoms can be mild or fatal. This disease is caused by bacterium strain Vibrio cholerae. It is an acute, diarrheal illness which occurs when the bacteria infected the intestines. This disease can infect persons of any age.

Symptoms: Sometimes, only mild diarrhea is manifested in some patients after bacterial infection while in some patients no symptoms are found. In about 10% cases severe watery diarrhea and vomiting start from 6 hours to 5 days after bacterial infection. Severity of the infection depends on the types of Vibrio cholerae. Patient loses water and electrolysis every time he vomits or discharge watery stool. If the patient is not treated in time, many complications can develop because of dehydration and loss of electrolysis from the body. If the condition of the patient deteriorates, symptoms like sunken eyes, acute weakness, cramps in feet and other parts of body, dry mouth, loss of blood pressure, cold skin, cold sweat etc. develop. Skin becomes loose and wrinkled owing to loss of body fluid and becomes bluish. If not treated, the patient can die very soon. 

Cause:  One can infected by the bacteria through contaminated food and water. In old times, people used to defecate in open. An infected person’s stool could contaminate water bodies and from there, bacteria could enter the intestine of a healthy person and infect him. Also, flies are the source of spreading this disease. Usually they carry bacteria from feces and land them on food and water. When a person eats that contaminated food or water, bacteria reach his intestine and infect him.

Precautions: It is said precaution is better than the cure. One should not eat stale food and take contaminated water. Food stuffs should be well cooked and water should be filtered properly. Street foods and unhygienic eatables should not be consumed. Open defecating should not be practiced and toilets should be made wherever they are not available. Water should be treated with potassium permanganate and chlorine. Patients saliva, discharges, vomiting etc. should be destroyed scientifically. Sanitation and hygienic practices are the best solution. Because of unhygienic practices in South-Asian countries, this disease was once very prevalent.

Treatment: Vaccines can be taken during the outbreak of cholera. Antibiotics like tetracycline, ciprofloxacin, erythromycin, chloramphenicol, etc. are used to treat this disease. However, cases of the antibiotic-resistant bacteria are also developing. Even some cases are of multi-drug resistant bacteria. Hence, antibiotics should not be misused. Cholera decreases body fluids and electrolysis. Oral-rehydration therapy is very effective in the treatment of cholera. Patient should be given lots of water and liquids so that he may not face dehydration. Some, homeopathic medicines are also very effective in treatment of cholera. They are given as per the symptoms of the patient.  

Be careful, be safe.

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Causes of cholera

The cause of cholera infection is a bacterium named Vibrio cholerae. Cholera bacteria produce CTX or potentially powerful toxins in the small intestine. The intestinal wall attached to CTX will interfere with the flow of sodium and chloride minerals to eventually cause the body to expel large amounts of water (diarrhea) and result in a lack of electrolytes and fluids.

There are several serology groups from Vibrio cholerae bacteria, but there are only two types that can cause an epidemic, namely V.cholerae O1 and V.cholerae O139. Both types have the same toxicity and the symptoms produced are not much different.