Did you know that in 1884, railroad magnate and former California Governor Leland Stanford and his wife Jane Stanford, lost their only child to typhoid fever? As a memorial and as a way to educate more children, they built the institution that is now the prestigious Stanford University.
Typhoid Fever is a life-threatening infection caused by a virulent bacteria called Salmonella Typhi that is rare in the most developed countries but remains a serious health concern in developing countries including here in Nigeria. Access to safe water and adequate sanitation is important in preventing transmission.
Mode of transmission
You can contract the infection if you eat food handled by someone with typhoid fever who hasn’t washed carefully after using the toilet. Typhoid fever spreads through contaminated food and water and occasionally through close contact with someone who’s infected.
Signs and symptoms are likely to develop gradually – often appearing one to three weeks after exposure to the disease.
Early stage symptoms can include:
If you don’t receive treatment, you may experience these later stage symptom:
If you are recovering from typhoid fever, these measures can help keep others safe:
The diagnosis of typhoid fever on clinical grounds is difficult, as the presenting symptoms are diverse and similar to those observed with other febrile illnesses.
As one of the enteric diseases, typhoid fever can be accurately diagnosed by analyzing stool and blood specimens. These samples will be examined for the Salmonella Typhi bacteria that causes the condition.
Analyzing patients’ stool and blood samples is recognized by the World Health Organisation as one of the most accurate ways to diagnose typhoid fever.
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