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Typhoid fever is a life threatening illness caused by the bacterium Salmonella typhi
Anyone can get ill after exposure to Salmonella typhi bacteria. Travelers visiting developing countries are at the greatest risk for getting typhoid fever.
The infection is spread directly from person to person or through contaminated food or water
Some infected persons may not show any symptoms (called typhoid fever “carriers”), but can spread the bacteria to others through their feces and urine for many years. Animals do not carry Salmonella typhi.
Symptoms start 3 days to 2 months (usually 7 to 14 days) after exposure and may include:
Infection can be diagnosed by detecting the bacterium in the stool
The bacteria may also be identified in blood and other body fluids.
Typhoid fever should be treated with antibiotics
Infection can be prevented by:
A vaccine is available to prevent typhoid fever in certain situations
Typhoid vaccine is also recommended for persons living in a household with a typhoid fever carrier.
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