Typhoid Fever

Even diseases have lost their prestige, there aren't so many of them left. Think it over... no more syphilis, no more clap, no more typhoid... antibiotics have taken half the tragedy out of medicine - Louis Ferdinand Celine (French writer and physician, 1894-1961)

Typhoid Fever
Typhoid Fever

image by: Sabin Vaccine Institute

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Typhoid fever: a past, present, and future threat

For most communities in high-resource countries, typhoid fever is a distant memory. While it used to rampage major cities in the United States and Europe, typhoid fever was largely stamped out in the 1940s with the advent of antibiotics and improved sanitation. And for international travelers, two typhoid vaccines available at the local clinic eliminate most concerns about contracting the disease abroad.

However, for millions of people living in low- and middle-income countries, typhoid is a very present danger. Typhoid is a serious and life-threatening enteric fever, spread through contaminated food and water. It disproportionately impacts children and marginalized populations in…

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 Typhoid fever: a past, present, and future threat

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Take on Typhoid

CaT focuses on vaccine policy, raising awareness about the prevalence of typhoid, and the need for vaccines. CaT aims to ensure that sufficient global typhoid immunization and financing policies are in place to enable the widespread use of typhoid vaccines in endemic areas, and that these policies are supported at the regional and national levels.

Typhoid Fever

Blogging about Typhoid fever which has harassed mankind since the beginning of civilization...


Most cases (up to 75%) are acquired while traveling internationally. Typhoid fever is still common in the developing world, where it affects about 21.5 million persons each year. You can get typhoid fever if you eat food or drink beverages that have been handled by a person who is shedding Salmonella Typhi or if sewage contaminated with Salmonella Typhi bacteria gets into the water you use for drinking or washing food.

Fit For Travel

Various vaccines that protect against typhoid are available: Typherix, Typhim Vi and and an oral preparation (3 capsules) called Vivotif. A single dose of injectable vaccine protects for three years, but will not protect against para-typhoid fever.


Antibiotic therapy is the only effective treatment for typhoid fever. Commonly prescribed antibiotics •Ciprofloxacin (Cipro). In the United States, doctors often prescribe this for nonpregnant adults. •Ceftriaxone (Rocephin). This injectable antibiotic is an alternative for women who are pregnant and for children who may not be candidates for ciprofloxacin.


For those traveling to high-risk areas, vaccines are now available. The vaccine is usually not recommended in the U.S. There are two forms of the vaccine available an oral and an injectable form. The vaccination needs to be completed at least one week prior to travel and, depending on the type of vaccine, only protects from two to five years. The oral vaccine is contraindicated in patients with depressed immune systems.


Typhoid fever is a bacterial infection that can spread throughout the body, affecting many organs. Without prompt treatment, it can cause serious complications and can be fatal. It is caused by a bacterium called Salmonella typhi, which is related to the bacteria that cause salmonella food poisoning. Typhoid fever is highly contagious. An infected person can pass the bacteria out of their body in their stools (faeces) or, less commonly, in their urine.


Typhoid and paratyphoid fevers are caused by related but different strains of Salmonella spp. There is considerable overlap in symptoms, although typhoid is the more severe and long-lasting disease, and is the one more likely to result in death if prompt treatment is not given. The name typhoid means 'resembling typhus', and was chosen because of the occurrence of neuropsychiatric symptoms in all three diseases.


Typhoid fever is a bacterial disease, caused by Salmonella typhi. It is transmitted through the ingestion of food or drink contaminated by the faeces or urine of infected people. Symptoms usually develop 1–3 weeks after exposure, and may be mild or severe. They include high fever, malaise, headache, constipation or diarrhoea, rose-coloured spots on the chest, and enlarged spleen and liver. Healthy carrier state may follow acute illness. Typhoid fever can be treated with antibiotics. However, resistance to common antimicrobials is widespread. Healthy carriers should be excluded from handling food.

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