Paper Example on Typhoid Fever: Global Prevention Efforts Reduce Incidence

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1246 Words
Date:  2023-01-02


Typhoid fever is among life-threatening infectious diseases in developing nations. The bacterium responsible for causing typhoid fever is Salmonella enteric serovar Typhi. The entrance of the bacterium into the body is via the mouth when contaminated water or food gets ingested. Poor sanitation and unhygienic conditions are the leading causes of typhoid fever. The illness occurs mostly in children than among adults. At the global level, the incidences of typhoid fever have reduced because of the increased use of antibiotics for treatment and vaccines for prevention. The resistance to antibiotics used to treat typhoid fever is on the increase, a situation leading to more research in coming up with improved treatment medications. The symptoms for typhoid depend on the severity of the illness, but the most common signs include diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pains, and weaknesses. As seen in the discussion of this paper, typhoid fever is one of the life-threatening diseases especially in developing nations that requires an understanding of its causes, signs, diagnosis, treatment, as well as statistics for appropriate interventions for its management and control.

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Causes of Typhoid Fever

Typhoid fever is caused by Salmonella enteric serovar Typhi bacterium. The infection occurs when drinking water or food gets contaminated with the bacterium (Whitehead, 2019). Once the contaminated water or food gets ingested, the bacterium enters the intestinal walls, and after multiplying in the lymphoid tissue, it penetrates the bloodstream causing bacteremia. The leading carriers of the typhoid-causing bacteria are human beings, flies, and some fishes that survive in polluted or contaminated water like oysters, shellfish, as well as vegetables grown in contaminated water like untreated sewage. Carriers of the typhoid bacterium contaminate food and water causing the infection to healthy people. Human excretion of infested individuals has the bacterium; therefore, poor management of public sanitation and unhygienic conditions increases the spread of the bacterium (Al-ameri, 2016). Untreated sewerage or inadequate pit latrines increases the chances for water and food contamination and the subsequent spread of typhoid fever to healthy people.

Signs and Symptoms of Typhoid Fever

The signs and symptoms of typhoid fever depend on the severity and stage of the illness. In the early stages of the disease that is during the first week, the patient shows these signs: fever reaching to as high as 104.9 F, headaches, fatigue, muscle aches, dry cough, sweating, diarrhea, abdominal pain, lack of appetites (Rogers, 2019). In the later stages of the condition at the third and fourth week, the patient having typhoid fever starts to experience chest congestion in additions to the signs in the early stage. When medications are not used, at an advanced stage of typhoid, the patient becomes delirious with an inability to move because of extreme weakness and fatigue (Naeem, Abid & Abid, 2018). The condition of weakness and fatigue where the patient lies motionless in an exhausted status is referred to as typhoid state; at this stage, there is the development of life-threatening complications like fainting and intestinal bleeding.

Diagnosis of Typhoid Fever

Testing for diagnosis occurs through the analysis of blood, stool, and urine samples. By the use of the microscope, samples are analyzed to check the presence of Salmonella typhi bacteria in the patient's body. In case the detection of the bacteria does not occur using the analysis of stool, blood, or urine, an advanced diagnosis that involves the assessment of bone marrow occurs (Whitehead, 2019). Though getting the sample the testing of the bone marrow to detect the presence of Salmonella Tyhi is painful and time-consuming, it is an accurate analysis for typhoid fever compared to stool culture, blood culture, or serological testing (Al-ameri, 2016). Since typhoid fever is life-threatening at the advanced stages of the illness, it is advisable to test for the disease at its early stages to avoid extreme signs and complications associated with typhoid fever.

Treatment of Typhoid Fever

Once the diagnosis for the disease is complete, the treatment procedure begins. The treatment of typhoid uses antibiotics. The identification of the type of the S. Typhi strain determines the kind of the antibiotic that a patient gets assigned to (Rogers, 2019). The typical examples of medicines used to treat typhoid fever include fluoroquinolones like ciprofloxacin, azithromycin or ceftriaxone. These medications kill the S. Typhi in the body leading to reduced signs and symptoms of typhoid for progressive patient improvement. The treatment of typhoid has been challenging in some parts of the world like Africa and Southeast Asia because of the presence of S. Typhi strains that resist antibiotics. As a result, there is the tendency of antibiotics becoming ineffective due to antibiotic resistance by some strains of S. Typhi. Therefore, under the guidance of the CDC and WHO, there is continuous research for having the most effective antibiotics for the treatment of typhoid fever (Whitehead, 2019). While on medication, patients are advised to maintain hygiene, eat meals frequently, as well as take plenty of water to improve recovery.

Statistics on Typhoid Fever

Research has provided some statistics concerning typhoid fever. Concerning infection incidences, studies have shown that at the global level, approximately 21.4 million people contract typhoid annually (Naeem et al., 2018). In the USA, there are around 5,800 cases of typhoid fever infections per year (Rogers, 2019). Regarding severity and death cases, if not treated early, 2 out of 5 cases will lead to death meaning that the illness is life-threatening if left to develop to advanced stages (Al-ameri, 2016). For vaccine effectiveness, statistics show that vaccines are only 75% effective in preventing the illness which indicates the need for upholding hygiene even when under vaccinations (Whitehead, 2019). There are also some data on the carrier of the S. Typhi carriers. Studies show that about 15% to 20% of patients carry the bacteria after the acute condition of the illness (Naeem et al., 2018). Response on antibiotics, on the other hand, has a record of 95% as only 5 % of patients experience cases of drug resistance (Rogers, 2019).


Conclusively, typhoid is an infectious disease that develops when a healthy person drinks water or eats food contaminated with Salmonella Typhi bacteria. The disease is life-threatening if not diagnosed and treated in its early stages. The leading causes of the illness are unhygienic conditions and poor sanitation that leads to the spread of the S. Typhi through carriers like flies, people, and food to healthy people. The incidences of typhoid are high in undeveloped nations because of poor sanitation services. The illness is also common in young children than among adults. The signs and symptoms of the disease vary depending on the stage of the disease. Some of the signs include diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and weaknesses. Once the signs are evident, diagnosis occur using microscopic analysis of blood, stool, and urine samples. For accurate results, bone marrow analysis can be carried out to test the presence of S. Typhi. The treatment of typhoid is by the use of antibiotics. Researchers have also carried out investigations on typhoid fever and come up with statistics that help in understudying facts surrounding the illness. As a result, there is a need for interventions for the management and control of typhoid fever to reduce its incidences especially in undeveloped nations.


Al-ameri, G. (2016). A Prevalence Study of Typhoid Fever in Taiz and Al-Hodiedahcities in Yemen. British Microbiology Research Journal, 4(2), 214-223. doi: 10.9734/bmrj/2014/6768

Naeem, A., Abid, S., & Abid, M. (2018). TYPHOID FEVER. The Professional Medical Journal, 25(01), 39-44. doi: 10.29309/tpmj/18.4103

Rogers, K. (2019). typhoid fever | Definition, Symptoms, & Treatment. Retrieved from

Whitehead, S. (2019). Typhoid Fever Causes, Symptoms, Treatment and Vaccine. Retrieved from

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