The characteristics of cholera infection are diarrhea and reduced blood pressure. The disease of cholera is widespread and contagious in the environment of poor sanitary condition. Frequent watery discharge of stool and vomiting can cause the person to get dehydrated fast. If not treated with fluids the person is likely to collapse and die. It spreads through food and water through the carriers like bacteria. Cholera is commonly seen in Asia, India, Africa and part of Mexico. In extreme cases the patient should be given lot of fluids to prevent dehydration and death.
Discharge of watery stool with white colored mucus is seen in affected persons. The mucus will be similar to that of size of rice and hence known as ‘rice water stool’. There will be high frequency of diarrhea making the person dehydrated completely. Abnormal scram, rapid heartbeat and pulse rate, frequent vomiting, loss of elasticity in the skin, high degree of thirst, muscle cramps and restlessness are the main symptoms of cholera. All these symptoms together suggest that the individual is dehydrating fast and in severe cases the individual may develop renal failure.
Cholera is caused by bacteria called Vibrio cholerae. Once this bacterium enters the intestine or stomach through contaminated water or food, it produces a special toxin which in turn causes excess release of water content from the body producing dehydration. Drinking the water which is kept exposed and contaminated causes cholera. Sometimes even a healthy individual who travels to area which has contaminated food and water may get cholera.
The doctor will observe the physical condition of the patient and if necessary he would suggest blood culture test and stool culture.
Treatment is given depending on the condition of the patient. In severe cases it is necessary to hospitalize the patient for starting intravenous fluids. If the condition is stable, he will be given oral electrolytes to replenish the loss of ions through diarrhea. Once the symptoms of cholera are seen in any person, it is necessary to take him to the clinic immediately. Inordinate delay can cause serious consequences.