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Cholera<h2 class="sectHeading">​​About</h2><p>Cholera is a disease caused by the bacterium, <em>Vibrio cholerae</em>, resulting in acute watery diarrhoea (runny tummy). Most people who become infected with cholera have no symptoms and do not know that they are infected. However, an infected person will shed the bacteria in their faeces for seven to fourteen days and can still infect others if they do not wash their hands after using the toilet or before preparing food.<br><br> Cholera can cause rapid dehydration (loss of body fluids) and death if not treated quickly and successfully.</p> <span> <div class="notification with-heading dark-copy light-blue bg-light-grey"><div class="graphic with-border"> <i class="info fastfact">​​</i></div><div class="desc"><h4>cholera updates</h4><p> For the latest information on the Cholera outbreak visit the <a href="">National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) website<i class="icon link-external"></i></a>.</p></div></div></span> <p> People who are at risk of contracting cholera often don’t have access to adequate sanitation and use unsafe water from rivers, streams, boreholes, etc.<br></p><h4>It is spread by:</h4><ul><li>An infected person handling food without washing their hands </li><li>Drinking water or eating food that is contaminated with the cholera bacteria (human faeces)<br></li><li>Drinking unclean water </li><li>Using contaminated water to wash fruit, vegetables, working surfaces or cutlery and crockery<br></li></ul> <span> <div class="notification with-heading dark-copy light-blue bg-light-grey"><div class="graphic with-border"> <i class="info quickstat">​​</i> </div><div class="desc"><h4>did you know?<br></h4><p> Water can be contaminated at its source if it is stored in dirty containers or handled by an infected person who has not washed their hands. <br><br>You can get Cholera if you eat vegetables that have been fertilised with contaminated human excreta (night soil) or "freshened" with contaminated water. <br><br>Infection can also be caused by fish (particularly shellfish) sourced from contaminated water and eaten raw or not cooked thoroughly. <br></p></div></div></span> <h2 class="sectHeading">Symptoms</h2><p>Symptoms may occur within a few hours to five days after being infected (usually two - three days).<br></p><h4>If you’ve contracted cholera you may experience:</h4><ul><li>A sudden occurrence of severe, painless watery diarrhoea – in some cases it might have a ‘rice-water’ appearance;</li><li>Vomiting early in the illness;</li><li>Dehydration within hours of being ill, which may progress rapidly;<br></li><li>Muscle cramps, cold sweaty skin and rapid breathing- this happens in severe cases;</li></ul><h2 class="sectHeading">Treatment<br></h2><p>If you have any of the above symptoms, visit your nearest doctor, clinic or hospital immediately. If not treated, serious complications may occur, e.g. kidney failure.<br></p><h4 class="ms-rteElement-H4B">If you, a family member or your baby has diarrhoea:<br></h4><ul><li>Drink lots of fluids – dehydration can be rapid</li><li>Prepare an oral rehydration solution (ORS) and drink this regularly and on your way to the clinic, doctor or hospital. <br></li><li>Infants who breastfeed should continue for as long as they will feed.<br></li><li>Do not take medication to stop the diarrhoea.<br></li></ul> <span> <div class="notification with-heading dark-copy pink bg-light-grey"><div class="graphic with-border"> <i class="info note">​​​</i> </div><div class="desc"><h4>Please note</h4><p>If you have diarrhoea, replace the lost fluids with an <a href="" target="_blank">oral rehydration/sugar and salt solution</a>. <br> <br> 1. Boil one litre of water and allow it to cool.<br> 2. Add eight level teaspoons of sugar and a half a teaspoon of salt and stir well.<br>3. Start taking the solution immediately and after each watery stool.</p></div></div></span> <p>Follow the directions below to find out how much ORS to take or give according to age:<br></p> <span> <div class="mobile-scroll">​​<br> <table style="width:602px;"><thead><tr><th style="width:200px;">Age<br></th><th style="width:433px;">ORS<br></th></tr></thead><tbody><tr><td style="width:200px;">Children younger than 2 years </td><td style="width:433px;">75 – 125 ml (a quarter to half a large 250 ml cup) after each watery stool. Offer one teaspoon of solution every one to two minutes. </td></tr><tr><td style="width:200px;">Children aged 2 to 10 years </td><td style="width:433px;">125 ml – 250 ml (half to one large cup) after each watery stool. Encourage the child to take frequent sips, every three to five minutes.</td></tr><tr><td style="width:200px;">Children older than 10 years and adults <br></td><td style="width:433px;">As much of the solution as possible, at least 250 ml after each watery stool.</td></tr></tbody></table></div>​​​</span> <p>If you are vomiting too, do not stop taking the ORS. Pause for 5 - 10 minutes and then restart taking or giving the ORS at a slower pace. <br></p><h2 class="sectHeading">​Prevention</h2><p>You can prevent contracting cholera by practicing good food and personal hygiene and ensuring that you <a href="" target="_blank">drink and cook with safe water</a>. See our <a href="" target="_blank">Prevention Tips</a>.</p><h2 class="sectHeading">Contact us</h2><p>For more information, contact your <a href="">nearest clinic or healthcare facility</a>.</p><p>If you find yourself in an emergency situation, contact <em> <a>107</a></em> from a landline, or <em> <a>021 480 7700</a></em> from a cellphone. ​</p>GP0|#5b501afa-3cb5-4d8d-9a4f-e06e313225e9;L0|#05b501afa-3cb5-4d8d-9a4f-e06e313225e9|Cholera;GTSet|#ef3a64a2-d764-44bc-9d69-3a63d3fadea1;GPP|#d65ab879-2884-426b-a380-7b8f9433c812;GPP|#090e430c-3809-42d5-a80b-caea93b2beaf;GPP|#245ec7aa-a528-4cd3-bcac-597c292db711Find out about cholera, as well as the prevention and treatment methods.0





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