Typhoid: symptoms, disease course and vaccination
Typhoid vaccination: booster after 3 years
Children, adolescents and adults can be vaccinated. The protective effect lasts up to three years. The vaccination is carried out by a pediatrician, a family doctor or a tropical institute.
Distribution: High risk of typhus for individual travelers in endemic areas
Enjoying typical local dishes and specialties at markets, stalls and pubs is often a special attraction on long-haul trips. But the risk of a typhoid infection is often underestimated.
The typhoid pathogen is spread all over the world. The highest risk of infection is in the countries of Africa, Southeast Asia, Latin and South America when traveling to endemic areas.
Typhoid is often transmitted through contaminated drinking water
Infected people excrete the typhoid pathogen (Salmonella Typhi) with their stool. In the case of poor hygienic conditions, drinking water and food can then be contaminated with bacteria. Infection then occurs through consumption of these contaminated foods or contaminated water.
About a week after the onset of the disease, infected people begin to excrete the bacteria. Even after surviving the illness, 1-5% of the patients remain permanently excretors of the bacteria and thus represent a permanent risk of infection for their fellow human beings.
Symptoms and course of the disease: Typhus is associated with a high fever for a long time
Typhoid is not just a bowel disease. The bacteria can flood the whole body (blood poisoning). A number of complications can arise as the disease progresses, leading to lengthy hospitalization or even death.
After an incubation period of 3 to 60 days, the illness begins with flu-like symptoms such as fever, headache and body aches, nausea, vomiting and a feeling of weakness. If left untreated, the fever can reach temperatures of up to 41 ° C within a few days, and the high temperature can last for weeks. Constipation can occur at first, followed by diarrhea later.
Complications include intestinal bleeding, intestinal perforations (intestinal perforations caused by ulcers), lung inflammation, heart muscle inflammation (myocarditis), meningitis (meningitis), blood poisoning and damage to the spleen (spleen rupture). Due to the initially uncharacteristic symptoms at the beginning of the disease, typhoid fever is often recognized very late, and although typhoid fever can be treated with antibiotics, the disease can be fatal.
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