Cholera: The Basics

  • Cholera is an infection of the small intestine that causes a large amount of watery diarrhea.
  • Cholera is one of the most feared epidemics out there
  • It is caused by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae.

    Vibrio Cholerae: the bacteria that causes cholera

    Vibrio Cholerae: the bacteria that causes cholera

  • Cholera occurs in places with poor sanitation, crowding, war, and famine.
  • People get the infection by eating or drinking contaminated food and water.
  • Cholera is easily preventible if adequate medical care is provided.
  • Complications Include: Death and severe dehydration
  • If one does not seek treatment of cholera, serious infection can cause death.
  • The bacteria releases a toxin that causes increased release of water from cells in the intestines, which produces severe diarrhea.
  • When the cholera outbreak occurred, it was raging with great violence.
  • When people consume contaminated water or food that has cholera bacteria in it, they are immediately exposed to the disease.  The bacteria spreads rapidly and penetrates the intestinal wall.  This causes severe dehydration and diarrhea for the one infected.  The toxic material prevents the intestine from absorbing any water and from breaking down digested food.  Cholera can be avoided if people consume proper food and drink.  

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