Travel Health Advice - Typhoid fever
What is it? Typhoid fever is a systemic disease caused by a Salmonella bacteria. The disease varies greatly in severity: at its worst the patient can experience fever, headache, malaise, anorexia and insomnia. Constipation is more common than diarrhoea. If not treated, sustained fever, slowing of the heart, enlargement of the liver and spleen, abdominal symptoms and pneumonia may present. Caucasians can show pink spots (papules) on their body. By the third week gastrointestinal and other complications can develop, which may be fatal. How is it transmitted? By contaminated food or water. Culprits include shellfish and flies exposed to sewage. Where is it present? Worldwide wherever sewage disposal is unsanitary. Level of risk? Depends on region; generally very low. What can I do to prevent getting it? Get a vaccination; drink bottled or purified water, and be cautious about eating unsanitary food.