Several cases of typhoid, viral fever and gastro intestinal diseases have been reported across Kolkata over the last one week, doctors have told the media. Health experts say this is an usual pattern at this time of the year. Salmonella typhi bacteria that causes enteric fever, E.coli, Campylobacter jejuni, vibrio cholerae, and a few shigella cases have been detected.

Key symptoms of gastrointestinal viral fever to pay attention to

The common symptom seen in these cases is mild stomach discomfort.
One of the hallmark symptoms of typhoid fever is a sustained high fever, often reaching up to 103-104°F (39-40°C). Patients with typhoid fever often experience extreme weakness and fatigue, which can interfere with daily activities. Pain and discomfort in the abdomen, often around the belly button area, are common. Persistent headaches, ranging from mild to severe, are frequent in typhoid fever cases.
Gastrointestinal fever, often referred to as gastroenteritis, is characterized by inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract caused by viral, bacterial, or parasitic infections. Common symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and sometimes fever. The onset of symptoms is usually sudden and can vary in severity depending on the underlying cause. Viral gastroenteritis, such as norovirus or rotavirus infections, typically presents with watery diarrhea and vomiting, along with abdominal discomfort. Bacterial gastroenteritis, often caused by pathogens like Salmonella, Escherichia coli (E. coli), or Campylobacter, may include bloody diarrhea, fever, and more pronounced abdominal pain. Parasitic infections, such as Giardia or Cryptosporidium, can lead to prolonged diarrhea and malaise.

Dehydration is a significant concern with gastroenteritis due to fluid loss from vomiting and diarrhea, especially in infants, young children, and older adults.

Factors behind surge of gastrointestinal viral fever

Gastrointestinal issues can stem from various factors including infections (viral, bacterial, parasitic), dietary indiscretion (such as consuming contaminated food or water), food allergies or intolerances, medication side effects, and chronic conditions like inflammatory bowel disease or irritable bowel syndrome. Stress and anxiety can also exacerbate symptoms. These issues disrupt the normal functioning of the digestive system, leading to symptoms like abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and bloating.
Humidity, onset of monsoon, consumption of contaminated food and water are said to be the common reasons behind the recent infections.

If there’s an outbreak of gastrointestinal viral fever in the nearby locality, here’s what you need to do

During a gastrointestinal viral fever outbreak, practicing good hygiene and preventive measures are essential to reduce the risk of infection and transmission. Firstly, frequent handwashing with soap and water, especially before eating or preparing food, after using the bathroom, and after caring for someone who is sick, helps prevent the spread of viruses. Avoid close contact with individuals who are ill, and if you are sick, stay home to prevent spreading the infection to others.

What to do if someone gets an allergic reaction?

Maintaining proper food safety practices is crucial. Ensure food is cooked thoroughly, especially meats and seafood, and avoid consuming raw or undercooked foods. Wash fruits and vegetables thoroughly before eating, and avoid sharing utensils, cups, or food with others. Additionally, drink clean, safe water, and avoid untreated or potentially contaminated water sources.
If you are in an area experiencing a gastrointestinal viral fever outbreak, stay informed through reliable sources such as local health authorities. Follow any recommendations or directives given by health officials to protect yourself and your community. By practicing these measures diligently, you can help mitigate the spread of gastrointestinal viruses and reduce the risk of illness during an outbreak.