Typhoid is a serious infection that is quite common in Pakistan. It is caused by eating food or drinking water that is contaminated by the bacterium Salmonella typhi. In Pakistan, it is one of the most common cause of fever that lasts more than 3 days. The signs and symptoms of typhoid include
- High grade continuous fever(3 or more days)
- Abdominal pain
- Vomiting or Diarrhea
- Loss of hunger/Loss of appetite
Typhoid is treated with appropriate antibiotics for 10-14 days. Diagnostic workup should be done before starting the antibiotics. You should consult your child specialist if your child's fever is not getting better after three days, or if the child looks sicker to you. While most children are treated for typhoid as an outpatient, some children need to be admitted in the hospital. Remember that typhoid can have serious complications if it is not treated promptly.
Typhoid can be prevented by avoiding contaminated food and water, and by maintaining good hand hygiene. While eating out, remember the saying, "boil it, cook it, peel it or forget it'. Vaccines are also available to protect children from typhoid in Pakistan. Please see the relevant section.