Food Poisoning – Diagnosis And Treatment

Food Poisoning Treatment

Food poisoning may appear due to intake of contaminated food in solid or liquid form. This is a common illness all over the world and not specific to particular region or part of the world. Usually, this is mild in its nature. But may cause serious illness.

image by late.lunch
image by late.lunch

Depends upon the food poison’s influence on the gastrointestinal tract it is presented with abdominal discomfort, fever, chills, nausea, voimiting, diarrhea, watery stool with blood and mucus. Consequences may be very mild or even fatal. This may affect individuals or group who take the contaminated food. Normally, the symptoms appear immediately after taking the contaminated food and the symptoms take its course up to 48 hours.

About 250 different kinds of diseases are identified but all are not common cause of the diseases. Some most common causes of virus and bacteria are discussed here below.

It is estimated by centre for disease control and prevention that 76 millions of people are affected by food poison, 3,25,000 are admitted to hospital and about 5000 deaths are occurring in America per year and it is well established that diarrheal death are increasing in number world wide.

Viruses are the most common cause of food poison. The public places like schools, hotels and the cities with thick population are places where this disease spread fastly.

Noroviruses are forming a group of virus and they cause mild illness. This illness is accompanying nausea, vomiting, headache and abdominal pain. Fever is also a prominent symptom with diarrhea. These symptoms generally disappear within two to three days. Food poisoning of this virus occurs through contaminated fish, water and vegetables. This is transmitted easily from human to human.

Rotavirus is one of the viruses that cause food poison in the form of diarrhea in children commonly below 5 years of age. This infection is called and named as stomach flu though there is no relation with influenza. There are seven types of viruses in rotavirus namely A B C D E F AND G. Type A is the common one which affects children. But however, the immunity develops whenever it infects and future infection become less severe in its form. The transmission of the disease is fecal-oral route. The toxins are formed when this virus infects human being and this toxin in turn causes gastroenteritis. About 5, 00,000 children die out of this diarrhea every year.

image by Bluebirdbaby
image by Bluebirdbaby

Hepatitis A viruses are causing diarrhea and this is accompanied by fever, fatigue, loss of appetite and with jaundice. The transmission is from human to human by fecal contamination of food.

Bacteria are most common cause of food poison oriented diarrhea and generally they are transmitted from one person to another through fecal contaminated food. These bacterias are causing inflammation of the intestine and it prevents the digestive system to absorb nutrient and the toxins produced by them causing damage to digestive system and cause nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

The bacterium, salmonella is the common cause of food poison in U.S, several European countries and in Asia. The normal appearing eggs may contain these bacterias when eaten raw or under-cooked and it causes illness.  This infected form of the disease usually has fever, abdominal cramps. Diarrhea begins in 12 to 72 hours after taking this contaminated food. This illness may long last up to 7 days and the patients recover easily and in severe cases hospitalization is necessary. The other route of food poison of this salmonella is poultry, dairy products and sea food.

image by MarshallsArt
image by MarshallsArt

Camphylobacter is also a most common cause for food poison. This bacterium and its association were identified as a cause of food poisoning in the year 1975. Eating undercooked chicken, meat, cheese, unpasteurized milk is causing this illness. Normally this bacterium lives in the intestines of mammals, and warm blooded birds. Diarrhea is common symptom of this food poison and this lasts for 7 days. The stool examination will reveal the presence of this bacterium.

E.coli is a bacteria that enter in to food like beef and vegetables and the food containing   these bacteria cause food poisoning. Certain type of strains of this E.coli is causing stomach cramp, vomiting, bloody stool and diarrhea. It is transmitted by raw or undercooked meat, juices, contaminated well water and milk.

image by Nina.milani
image by Nina.milani

Shigella is the one of the severe form of diarrhea that can cause even an out-break of he disease. Shigella is a family of bacteria that are able to cause sudden and severe form of diarrhea. This form of diarrhea is also called as bacillary dysentery. It is commonly spread from person to person or through contaminated food. This form of diarrhea always accompanying with a constant feeling for evacuation of stool and the stool will contain blood and mucus.

Pesticides contaminate food materials like fruits and vegetables and consuming this food of fruit causes food poison and such poison may cause mild to severe illness with blurred vision, headache, abdominal cramp, high saliva production and diarrhea. Neurogenic symptoms like tremor in legs and hands may also appear. This is transmitted by eating unwashed fruits or vegetables contaminated with pesticides.

The common treatment for food poisoning is home support of avoiding dehydration with adequate liquid.  After diarrhea is arrested the bland diet such as rice, bread and milk to be taken. In severe cases with nausea, vomiting and fever the patient should be treated properly in the hospital.

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