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AMEBIASIS

Amebiasis is a disease caused by Entamoeba histolytica parasite. It affects most of the people living in tropical areas with a poor sanitation. Amebiasis is difficult to diagnose because other parasites look similar to E. histolytica when seen under a microscope. Not all infected people become sick. If your doctor said that you’re infected. You will need treatment and medication is available.

WHO ARE AT RISK Of Amebiasis?

  • People who traveled to tropical places that have poor sanitation
  • Immigrants from tropical countries that have poor sanitation
  • People who live in places that have poor sanitary conditions
  • Men having sex with men
  • A pregnant women
  • Malnourished person
  • A recipient of corticosteroid

HOW CAN I BECOME INFECTED?

  • When you put anything in your mouth that has touched the stool of a person with E. histolytica.
  • Take something such as food or water that contains E. histolytica.
  • When you touch the cysts (eggs)and bring it to your mouth

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?

Symptoms occur 1 to 4 weeks after ingestion of the cysts. At this stage, the symptoms are mild and have stomach cramping and loose tools.

If the parasite has reached the intestinal walls, they can damage the bloodstream and go to your internal organs. They can end in your liver, brain, heart, or other organs. And they cause illness, infections and even death.

HOW IS IT DIAGNOSED?

Your doctor may conduct a test for the presence of cysts on your stool. You will undergo some tests to check your liver function. If parasites have spread, it is not visible in stool anymore. So you may undergo CT scan or ultrasound to check your liver. If there are lesions in your liver it has to be check for abscesses.  The Abscess is a serious consequence of amebiasis. Your colon will be check for parasite presence.

HOW TO TREAT?

Ask your doctor for an advice or prescribed medicine. Your doctor may prescribe medicine to control nausea if you needed. Surgery may be necessary if your organs are damaged. The following are the prescribed drugs used to treat this condition:

  • Paromomycin (Humatin)
  • Iodoquinol (Yodoxin)
  • Diloxanide Furoate
  • Metronidazole
  • Tinidazole (Tindamax)
  • Chloroquine (Aralen)
  • Dehydroemetine

HOW CAN I PREVENT AMEBIASIS?

In order to prevent this disease safety measures must practice like:

  • Proper sanitation
  • Practicing proper and healthy hygiene
  • Do not eat unwrapped foods
  • Use a straw when drinking bottled water and soft drinks
  • Boiling of tap water before drinking
  • Do not buy fruit or vegetable that you did not peel yourself
  • Avoid buying of street foods which are sold by street vendors
  • Avoid buying of dairy products that not pasteurized
  • Apply alcohol or hand sanitizer to your hands if possible