Immunization - Typhoid

Typhoid is a water borne illness which can be potentially life threatening. It is caused by bacteria Salmonella typhi (S. typhi). Typhoid is transmitted by food or water that has been contaminated by affected individuals (mostly by fecal matter) and where hygiene and sanitation has been breached.

The symptoms of typhoid may be high grade fever, headache, tiredness and weakness, changes in behaviour, and abdominal discomfort with constipation in the early stages of the disease followed by diarrhoea later.

The most severe complications of typhoid are intestinal bleeding, intestinal perforation, encephalitis. Typhoid bacteria is much more resistant organism requiring 2 antibiotics for a duration of at least 2 weeks to get rid of this organism.

It can definitely be prevented by taking care of hygiene, having hot food while travelling, carrying own water or using bottled water and by vaccination. Although I must say that vaccines which are currently available are protective in 80% of cases only as compared to vaccines which are available. The other thing one must remember is that it has to repeated every 3 years.

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