on 26.1.09 with 0 comments

There are numerous causative organisms. The following list is not exhaustive:
  • Viruses: rotavirus, Norwalk-virus, HIV (AIDS).

  • Bacteria: Salmonella, Shigella, Yersinia, certain strains of Escherichia coli, Vibrio cholerae, Campylobacter, Clostridium difficile, Aeromonas, Plesiomonas.

  • Protozoa: Giardia lamblia, Entamoeba histolytica, Balantidium coli, microsporidia, various coccidia (such as Isospora belli, Cryptosporidium, Cyclospora). Malaria can also occasionally cause diarrhoea.

  • Worms (only with severe worm infections): Schistosoma mansoni, Capillaria philipinensis, Strongyloides stercoralis and S. fulleborni.

It is not always important to discover the precise cause of a diarrhoea. Recognition of an amoebic colitis is for example important, but the distinction between rotavirus or noroviruses, e.g. Norwalk virus enteritis has no clinical relevance in the tropics. The distinction between ordinary diarrhoea and dysenteria is important. If desired, it is best to examine a fresh faecal sample (culture, parasites, antigen detection, e.g. for Giardia). Supplementary analyses (thick blood smear, serology) are suggested by the symptoms and severity of the disease.

Category: Medicine Notes



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