• Five major differences between cholera, diarrhea and dysentery

    Five major differences between cholera diarrhea and dysentery - nigeria newspapers online
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    By Chinelo Obogo



    Cholera, dysentery, and diarrhea are all intestinal illnesses that make humans produce loose stools and dehydration, but they have some key differences:


    1. Cholera is caused by the vibrio cholerae bacterium, which produces a toxin that disrupts the function of the intestines.

    Diarrhea is caused by viruses, bacteria, parasites, or even certain medications.

    Dysentery is caused by an infection of the intestines, usually by shigella or amoeba.


    2. Symptoms of cholera include watery diarrhea, vomiting, muscle cramps, dehydration, while that if diarrhea are loose, watery stools, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting.

    For dysentery, they add bloody stools, fever, abdominal cramps, difficulty in having a bowel movement, sometimes nausea and vomiting.


    3. Cholera can be life-threatening if not treated immediately especially in children and people with weakened immune systems.

    For diarrhea, it can range from mild to severe, but it usually gets resolved on its own within a few days, while dysentery can be more severe than diarrhea, with symptoms lasting for a week or more.


    4. Treatment for diarrhea included hydration with fluids. Medications may be used to reduce cramping or vomiting, while for dysentery, antibiotics are used used to treat the infection. Rehydration is also important.

    Treatment for cholera involves intense rehydration, with fluids and electrolytes administered intravenously. Antibiotics may also be used.


    5. Prevention for diarrhea includes frequent hand washing, proper food handling and avoiding contaminated water. Dysentery has similar preventive measures as diarrhea, such as proper hygiene and sanitation.

    For cholera, access to clean water and sanitation are essential. Vaccines are also available in some areas.




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