Amebiasis is one kind of intestinal disease caused by a parasite known as Entamoeba histolytica or E. histolytica. Poor sanitation and hygiene are one of the most common reasons to develop this health issue. However, the clear knowledge regarding symptoms of Amebiasis can prevent its complication risk with early intervention of medical treatment.
People living with poor sanitation habit or in cases of male sex where men have sex with men the growth risk of this intestinal disease remains too high. People living in Tropics are the highest victim of this disease due to poor sanitation.
Stomach pain, abdominal cramp, and loose stool are some of its symptoms. However, it is not necessary that everyone developing Amebiasis will develop all these significant symptoms.
Only 10 to 20% of all amebiasis victims develop their symptoms. Stool examination is done to diagnose the existence of this health issue in order to start its treatment.
In the rare cases of amebiasis, the formation of liver abscess occurs in which parasites attacks in the liver healthy tissues, which is a complicated condition. However with proper sanitation and medications, one can get relief of this health concern completely.
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More than the 90% cases of amebiasis the patient hardly develops any significant symptom. Even if the symptoms develop those are quite mild such as soften stools, stomach cramping, stomach pain, gurgling sound in lower abdomen accompanied by 2-3 loose stools every day.
However in the cases of people who suffer from Amebic dysentery which is a severe form of amebiasis its symptoms includes bloody stools, stomach pain, and fever.
In the rare cases of amebiasis, the E. histolytica invades liver for the formation of an abscess. Also in the rarest condition, E. histolytica spreads to other body parts such as the brain and lungs which will be a critical condition.
Under the condition an affected person develops symptoms then it occurs within the 1st to 4th week from the date of cysts ingestion. Only about 10 to 20 percent cases the victim gets ill. If that happens the symptoms are mild such as loose stools and stomach cramping.
In the cases where Trophozoites crosses the intestinal walls, they easily enter the bloodstreams and other internal organs. In such conditions, it can spread up to heart, lungs, liver, brain and other major organs.
If Trophozoites manages to invade any internal organ then it can cause infections, abscesses, major illness, and even death too.
If E. histolytica manages to invade intestinal lining then it can cause amebic dysentery which is a much more dangerous condition than amebiasis. The symptoms of amebic dysentery include frequent bloody and watery stools and chronic stomach pain.
The liver is the most common invaded organ by the E. histolytica. The symptoms of the affected liver include fever and tenderness in the upper right side of the abdominal area.
Anyone can develop amebiasis but people living in poor sanitation condition are the most likely victim of this disease. The highest risk factor for this infection lies in the following conditions:
- Population living in tropical areas with bad sanitary conditions is the more common victim of this disease.
- Under the condition of immigration from tropical places if a concerned person lives in poor sanitary conditions then they can get a victim of amebiasis.
- Any special place, organization or institutions which have a sanitary issue can cause their resident to develop this intestinal disease.
- If anyone swallows or puts into their mouth anything which has touched the feces of an infected person remains at risk.
- Men who have sex with men can easily develop this health concern.
- If anyone by mistake swallows the E. histolytica cysts raised from a contaminated finger or surface contains a high risk of developing amebiasis.
- Anyone who accidentally swallows water or food contaminated with E. histolytica remains at risk to develop Amebiasis.
- E. histolytica parasite is the primary cause to create amebiasis. This can cause both intestinal infection and extraintestinal infection too such as liver abscess, cardiac, pleuropulmonary and cerebral dissemination.
- People who live in a poor sanitary condition or have visited many areas of the world where the sanitary level is very low can develop this parasitic infection very easily.
- Stools of a contaminated person can easily contaminate water and foods if used in cultivation.
- Homosexuality is one of the common reasons behind the growth of amebiasis through oral-anal sex with an infected person. In this condition, a homosexual person may get infected with the E. histolytica parasite and may not develop any symptom.
- Poor sanitary condition of an institution can cause to develop amebiasis disease to the people living over there.
- Drinking contaminated water or eating foods prepared with contaminated water can cause to develop amebiasis disease.
- Any infected person can easily transmit these diseases to others if they prepare foods without maintaining necessary hygiene.
- Anyone can get infected with amebiasis if some or other way they swallow cysts of the E. histolytica parasite.
- People with weaker immunity power can easily get infected with E. histolytica parasite and develops amebiasis disease.
- Microscopic cysts remain present in the soil, water, and fertilizer contaminated with infected feces. Foods grown in these contaminated soils or through a food handler cysts can be transmitted through foods.
Stools sample of different days are requires submitting in the diagnostic center to detect the existence of E. histolytica parasite because possibility lies that this parasite will not exist in every stool. The detection of stools will clarify whether these parasites exist or not to clear the existence of amebiasis disease.
In the cases of severe illnesses, if the doctor assumes that your E. histolytica parasite has crossed the intestinal boundaries and invaded some other organs of the body such as liver, they will ask for the blood test.
However, the blood test report is not always 100% accurate because it may show a positive result for the existence of E. histolytica parasite under the circumstances the concerned person has developed amebiasis previously.
The diagnosis of amebiasis disease is not so easy because of Entamoeba dispar ameba looks very much similar to E. histolytica parasite. So when checked with microscope this ameba resembles E. histolytica even though in reality they are different.
Just like E. histolytica parasite infection, the Entamoeba dispar infection doesn’t make its affected person sick so it does not require any special treatment. This means even if diagnosis says the existence of E. histolytica and the person doesn’t fall sick or develop any health concern that means they are infected with Entamoeba dispar.
Antibiotics are the most commonly prescribed medications in the cases of E. histolytica parasite infection to relieve the symptoms of amebiasis. However these antibiotics cannot be taken by self, it must be prescribed by the doctors.
In the cases where patients are not fell sick out of this infection, they need to take only one type of antibiotics. Under the condition infection has made the patient sick they will be prescribed with two antibiotics. At first one antibiotics followed by the second one.
For the treatment of uncomplicated cases of amebiasis, ten days course is run for metronidazole capsules. If patients also suffer from nausea then separate medications to relieve nausea symptoms are prescribed.
For more complicated cases of amebiasis where the parasites exist in the intestinal tissues the medications prescribed not only to treat amebiasis symptoms but also to cure damages in organs done by the parasite.
In the cases of perforations in the colon and peritoneal tissues, even surgery may be required to treat these damages completely done by the E. histolytica parasites.
As per the Food and Drug Administration Department (FDA) Tinidazole, medication, manufactured by the mission Pharmacal is an approved medicine for the treatment of amebiasis and amebic liver abscess caused by the E.histolytica parasite.
This medication is applicable for both adults and pediatric (children older than three years) groups. However, this medication is not meant for the treatment of asymptomatic cyst passage.
Maintaining proper sanitation and hygiene is the thumb rule to prevent amebiasis diseases or infection. In order to ensure this make sure that you wash your hands every time before preparing food or serving food.
Wash your hand thoroughly with hand wash and water after using the bathroom. Avoid the contact of objects used by a contaminated person who has developed this infection as these parasites can easily travel from one place to another.
If you are about to travel anyplace in the world or within your country about which you are very much sure that there is poor sanitation or this parasite infection is very common in that place, then ensure following safety measures:
- Avoid eating already peeled or cut fruits as chances exist that a person who has handled those foods have not maintained proper sanitation which can make you infected.
- While eating fruits or preparing any vegetables to wash them very well before eating and cooking.
- Avoid drinking general tap water. Instead, use bottled water and sealed soft drinks.
- If you have to drink normally available water then make sure that you boil it before drinking. You can use iodine in it while boiling to purify it.
- Avoid the drinking of fountain drinks or any ice cubes drinks.
- Avoid the consumption of foods sold by the street vendors as chances exist that the food handler has not maintained the sanitation which can make you fall sick if you eat them.
- Avoid eating or drinking milk, cheese or any other dairy products which are unpasteurized.
Tips to Care for an Amebiasis Patient
The foods that you eat regularly can trigger the symptoms of amebiasis and can make it worst. So it is very important to check your daily intake to control and relieve your condition.
Foods which are soft and plain in nature will be a good choice for you. Chew and eat slowly. Also avoid eating foods which are difficult to digest and can discomfort your stomach such as foods acidic in nature like oranges, tomatoes and caffeinated like coffee etc.
Give rest to your stomach and bowel by avoiding eating foods for some time. However, do not stop taking fluids. For this, you can drink clear liquids such as plain purified water, fruit juices (half juice and half water), weak tea, lemon-lime soda, Jell-O etc.
If you are suffering from diarrhea then avoid drinking milk as it can make your condition severe. In the cases of severe diarrhea, the affected person started to lose essential minerals and fluids from their body.
This makes their body weaker and disables them to work normally. Under these circumstances, the doctor prescribes for rehydration solutions to treat the dehydration issue. This drink fulfills the necessity of minerals and fluids in the body.
Soft foods which are easy to digest are favorable in this condition such as bananas, rice, plain noodles, toast, cooked cereals etc. Take enough rest which will help in relieving stomach cramping and from diarrhea. Instead of sleeping flat lie down popping your head up. After eating anything don’t lie for the next two hours.
Apply hot water therapy in the cases of stomach pain or cramp. For this put hot water bottle over the stomach or apply a heating pad. Make sure that you cover this hot bottle with a cotton cloth or towel as it can even cause your skin burn if applied directly. Also, set the heating pad in low mode.
Do not take antibiotics or any other anti-inflammatory medications without consulting with the healthcare provider as it increases the risk of stomach pain and other issues.
In the cases of older adults and children especially any medications should not be taken without proper consultation with the doctors otherwise side effects risk remains too high in people of those age groups.
It is very important once someone observes or develops the symptoms of Amebiasis without making further delay contact with a healthcare provider because it’s early stage treatment can prevent the risk of its severity. Also for a healthy lifestyle, it is very essential for everyone to maintain proper sanitation in their day to day life.View Article Sources