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Amoebic Dysentery :- Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, Prevention, Home Remedies and General Home Care of Dysentery

Dysentery is characterized by passing of liq­uid or semi-processed stools with or without blood, mucus and painful straining to empty the bowels. It is a disease in which ulceration occurs in the large intestine as a result of bacte­rial infection. Two organisms, protozoan and bacilli cause the infection and are known as amoebic dysentery and bacillary dysentery respectively. The attack of amoebic dysentery though milder does not leave the patient easily. The bacillary dysentery responds to treatment quickly. ­

Types of Dysentery

There are two major types: shigellosis which is caused by one of several type of Shigella bacteria; and amoebic dysentery, which is caused by the amoeba Entamoeba


The incubation period can be anywhere between 10 hours to 7 days, usually 2 to 3 days. The majority of cases clear up after 2 to 3 days but some patients may be ill for 2 to 3 weeks. The onset is usually abrupt with fever followed by vomiting, abdominal pain

Symptoms of Dysentery

Dysentery may be acute or chronic. Acute form of dysentery is characterised by fraquent stools, sometimes watery with pain and gripping ariund the naval,straining,discharge of mucus blood. There may be nausea and vomiting,loss of appetite and rise of temperature. The patient has a constsnt desite to evacuate but nothing comes out expect a little mucus and blood. Stomach looses power to digest the food. As the patients do not recover completely, the acute attacks develop into chronic cases

Causes of Dysentery

Bacterial infection.

Dietary indiscretion.

Consumption of infected food.

Poor hygiene.

Drinking impure or chiily water.

Exposure to extreme and sudden changes of temperature

Diagnosis of Dysentery

Diagnosis is made by testing a stool sample to see if the bacteria that cause dysentery are present. Further investigations, such as an ultrasound may be used if dysentery has caused further problems such as an ulcer .

Dysentery is a notifiable disease: this means your GP is required to tell the local authority if you have it. It is important that the local authority knows, so that they can try to identify the cause and if necessary take measures to prevent the disease spreading to other people.

Prevention of Dysentery

Pay particular attention to personal hygiene - hands should be thoroughly washed afterr using the toilet and immediately before any handling elderly person, preparing or serving of food etc.

Soiled clothing and bed linen should be washed in a domestic washing machine with a 'hot cycle'.

Soaking in a household disinfectant may also be used, before washing, to reduce contamination.

Disposable plastic or rubber gloves should be worn and hands thoroughly washed afterwards.

Clean toilet seats, flush handles, door handles and taps frequently with hot soapy water. use disinfectants

Home Remedies of Dysentery

  • Have the juice of two lemon added to glass of water, with rock salt and sugar
  • Take a tablespoon of fenugreek seeds . Grind and keep aside. One fourth of a teaspoon of this powder with a cup of fresh yoghurt had 2-3 times a day, clears the mucus in the stool. Alternatively, a tablespoon of the juice of fenugreek leaves, taken with1-2 black raisins will also relieve dysentery.
  • The use of pomegranate (anar ) rind is another effective remedy for dysentery.
  • Apple is also beneficial in the treatment of acute and chronic dysentery in the children. Ripe and sweet apples should be turned into soft pulp by steaming and given to the child several times a day, from one to four tablespoons

General Home Care of Dysentery

Diet should be liquid, milk products being preferable.

Drink plenty of fluids to offset those that are being lost.

Do fasting and take sips of cold water during acute stage.

Hot water botdes may be applied to ease the pain.

Intake of butter milk.

When to call a Doctor

If the stools contain too much of blood or you have severe abdominal pain.

If the symptoms are severe which are persisting and getting worse.

If there is no improvement even after two days.

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