Typhoid cases climbing: CDC

Staff writer, with CNA

Fri, Mar 28, 2014 - Page 4

The numbers of typhoid fever and paratyphoid fever cases reported in Taiwan so far this year are both higher compared with the same period of the past three years, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said, urging the public to pay attention to food safety and personal hygiene.

Seven typhoid fever cases and four paratyphoid fever cases have been confirmed since the beginning of the year, the CDC said. From 2011 to 2013, there were one, two and six respectively during the same period, while paratyphoid fever cases were one, three and zero, it said.

Because five of the seven typhoid cases and all paratyphoid cases this year were contracted overseas, the CDC warned the public to be on particular alert when traveling to South Asian and Southeast Asian countries, where the cases originated.

People overseas should avoid raw food or food purchased from street vendors, consume only boiled or bottled water, and maintain good personal hygiene habits to prevent infection, it said.

Typhoid fever and paratyphoid fever are primarily transmitted through the fecal-oral route, which involves ingesting contaminated food or water, or touching contaminated items, the CDC said.

Common symptoms include persistent fever, headache, general discomfort, loss of appetite, rash, abdominal pain, and constipation or diarrhea, it said.