Friday August 17, 2018

Drinking Iced Tea Linked to Cholera Risk in Endemic Countries

More work is needed to determine why iced tea boosts the risk of cholera, but the researchers believe that the bacteria may be found in ice, which is often bought from street vendors

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Drinking Iced Tea Can Up Risk of Cholera in Endemic Countries. Pixabya
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Drinking iced tea may increase risk of cholera in endemic countries because Vibrio cholerae, the bacteria which spreads the disease, might be present in ice as well, suggests new research from Vietnam.

The finding may have important implications in fighting the disease, the transmission of which is closely linked to inadequate access to clean water and it is often spread through contaminated drinking water.

“Along with traditional approaches that focus on enhancement of safe water, sanitation, and food safety, combined with periodic provision of oral cholera vaccines, a water quality monitoring system at ice-making plants should be established,” the researchers said.

After more than a decade of declining cholera incidence, Vietnam faced an increase in cases of the diarrhoeal disease during 2007-2010.

In the Ben Tre province of the Mekong Delta region in the southern part of Vietnam, no cholera cases were reported from 2005 until an outbreak in 2010.

In the new work, published in the journal PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, Thuong Vu Nguyen of the Pasteur Institute in Ho Chi Minh City, and colleagues interviewed 60 people who were confirmed to have been infected with cholera during the 2010 outbreak in Ben Tre, as well as 240 controls.

Iced Tea
Iced Tea. Pixabay

Information about each person’s eating and drinking behaviours and living environment was recorded.

The researchers also collected samples of nearby river water, drinking water, wastewater samples, and local seafood to test for Vibrio cholerae, the bacteria which spreads the disease.

The researchers found that drinking iced tea, not always boiling drinking water, having a main water source near a toilet, living with other who have diarrhoea, and having little or no education were all associated with an increased risk of cholera, while drinking stored rainwater, eating cooked seafood or steamed vegetables were protective against the disease.

The researchers found that 22 per cent of people with cholera reported drinking iced tea in the week prior to their disease, whereas only three per cent of controls had drank iced tea in the week before being interviewed.

Also Read: Alcohol May Increase Death Risk in Young TB Patients

Patients with cholera were also more likely to always put ice in their water and to use sedimented river water for drinking, bathing, cooking, and brushing their teeth.

More work is needed to determine why iced tea boosts the risk of cholera, but the researchers believe that the bacteria may be found in ice, which is often bought from street vendors. (Bollywood Country)

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Cameroon: Cholera Outbreak Claims a Dozen Lives

The disease has continued to spread since four cases of cholera were recorded in the northern Cameroon town of Mayo Oulo that borders Nigeria on May 18. He says many people, especially children, have been dying both in and out of hospitals.

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many people continue to defecate in the open air or in streams and river beds where both humans and animals go to find water to drink thereby facilitating the spread of cholera.VOA

A cholera outbreak in Cameroon has claimed at least a dozen lives. Hundreds of people have been rushed to several hospitals in the central African state. It is feared some of the cases were imported from Nigeria and may contaminate refugees fleeing the Boko Haram insurgency.

Arabo Saidou, the highest government official in charge of health in Cameroon’s north region says the first cases of cholera were reported along Cameroon’s border with Nigeria two months ago.

He says the disease has continued to spread since four cases of cholera were recorded in the northern Cameroon town of Mayo Oulo that borders Nigeria on May 18. He says many people, especially children, have been dying both in and out of hospitals.

In May, the Word Health Organization reported that Nigeria’s Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states had been experiencing recurrent cholera outbreaks since February, with a total of 1,664 suspected cases and 31 deaths.

Many people from the three Nigerian states travel to Cameroon for business. At least a hundred thousand are in Cameroon as refugees fleeing the Boko Haram insurgency, with over 90,000 at the Minawao refugee camp.

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Cameroon’s ministry of health indicated that the disease quickly spread to Yaounde and Douala, major cities in the central African state. VOA

Issac Bayoro, a Cameroonian epidemiologist working in the Mokolo administrative area where the Minawao refugee camp is located says they are educating refugees to respect hygiene norms and are also screening Nigerians coming to the camp in a bid to protect not only the refugees but their host communities.

He says many people continue to defecate in the open air or in streams and river beds where both humans and animals go to find water to drink thereby facilitating the spread of cholera. He says hygiene is not respected as many people do not wash their hands with soap as advised. He says people should stop trusting the belief that an African is naturally vaccinated and can not die of dirt.

Cameroon’s ministry of health indicated that the disease quickly spread to Yaounde and Douala, major cities in the central African state. The case reported in Yaounde was of a teenager who travelled to Yaounde from northern Cameroon with his mother. He latter died in a hospital according to the government.

Thomas Tawe, a university student and resident of Yaounde says he fears cholera may spread rapidly in the city because just 30 percent of the population has access to good drinking water.

Also Read-Fistula Epidemic In Nigeria, Cultural Practices To Blame

“In the city of Yaounde only those who can pay can have water. When you go into the quarters (neighbourhoods) you see that people are carrying water from unhygienic sources,” said Tawe. “If the water is contaminated, automatically we will be contaminated.” (VOA)