Essay on Cholera

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The disease, cholera, is an infection of the intestines, caused by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. As stated in Microbes and Infections of the Gut, the bacterium is “a Gram-negative, comma- shaped, highly motile organism with a single terminal flagellum” (105). Cholera is characterized by the most significant symptom that presents with the disease, diarrhea, and victims can lose up to twenty liters of body fluids in a day. Cholera can be a serious disease, due to the serious dehydration that can occur, but it is only fatal if treatment is not administered as soon as possible. This research paper includes information on the causes of cholera, symptoms, ways of treatment, studies of treatments, complications that may occur, the
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However, “although V. cholerae is the source of the cholera infection, the deadly effects of the disease are the result of a potent toxin, called CTX, that the bacteria produce in the small intestine. CTX binds to the intestinal walls, where it interferes with the normal flow of sodium and chloride. This causes the body to secrete enormous amounts of water, leading to diarrhea and a rapid loss of fluids and salts (electrolytes)” (Cholera: Causes)
There are other common sources of cholera bacterium are surface or well water, seafood, raw fruits and vegetables, and grains. In water, Vibrio cholerae can survive for long periods of time, staying dormant. People in areas with poor sanitation, like crowded refugee camps, are at risk of cholera, due to the fact that water provided for said community could be a source of contamination of cholera bacteria. Seafood, when raw or undercooked, can be contaminated by cholera bacteria, if the seafood came from certain areas with contaminated waters. Since the 1970s, cholera outbreaks in the U.S. have been caused by smuggled seafood from cholera-infected areas, and from the Gulf of Mexico. Shellfish are especially contaminated, due to the fact that “they filter large amounts of water, concentrating the levels of cholera bacteria”. Raw fruits—especially unpeeled—and vegetables coming from an area with a source of cholera are another frequent source of the cholera bacteria. Innoculation of the fruits

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