One of the most insidious diseases in the world today is Typhoid fever. When it first begins, a headache, fever, and constipation are typically common. Chills, fatigue, and general lethargy are also common. When it is first observed, it can be difficult to distinguish it from other infectious diseases. The only problem is that when Typhoid fever is left untreated, these symptoms can last for up to 4 weeks and the fatality rate can be as high as 30%.
Facts About Typhoid Fever Around the World
1. 21 million. That’s the number of estimated cases of Typhoid fever that occur around the world every year.
2. In the United States, about 5,700 cases of this infectious disease are diagnosed every year.
3. The number of people who die every year because of Typhoid fever: 600,000.
4. Some people who recover from Typhoid fever become known as a “chronic carrier.” Their body may contain infectious organisms for up to 12 months after recovery.
5. 5%. That’s the percentage of people who catch Typhoid fever and become a chronic carrier.
6. The CDC receives an average of 400 confirmed reports every year of US Typhoid fever from state or government laboratories.
7. Since 1994, Typhoid fever rates have been declining thanks to new vaccines that are available to frequent international travelers.
8. Infants, children, and adolescents in south-central and Southeastern Asia experience the greatest burden of illness.
9. The average age of a person infected with Typhoid fever today: 14.
10. Men catch Typhoid fever slightly more often than women, with a 1.36 to 1 ratio in studies that have been conducted.
11. 2. That’s the number of Typhoid fever vaccines that are available for use in the US.
12. The youngest age of vaccine use in the US: 6. In the rest of the world: 2.
13. The vaccine has been shown to be effective for up to 5 years with a 91.5% efficacy rate.
14. The greatest proportion of global Typhoid fever cases occurs in the 0-4 age demographic. By the age 40, all age demographics flatline near 0 incidents per 100,000 people.
15. Of the 21 tracked regions of the world, only 6 of them have nations that include routine blood monitoring for Typhoid fever.
16. 60 days. That’s how long it may take for the symptoms of Typhoid fever to develop after a person has been exposed to the disease.
17. Nations with the highest prevalence of Typhoid fever also have younger age averages for exposure when compared to low or medium exposure nations.
18. In SE Asia, the incidence rate of Typhoid fever is more than 100 per 100,000 people.
19. Latin America, the Caribbean, and Oceania have an incidence rate that is 10-100 per 100,000 people.
20. 80% of the US cases of Typhoid fever come from people who traveled to high risk nations.
21. 67% of the global cases of Typhoid fever are contracted from SE Asia.
22. Individuals visiting relatives in endemic countries accounted for 28% of the typhoid cases.
23. With a 1°C rise in temperature, the number of typhoid cases could increase by 14.2%.
24. When river levels rise by just 0.1 meters, high risk nations experience a 4.2% increase in Typhoid fever cases.
Typhoid fever is transmitted through foods or drinking water. It often occurs because water supplies have been contaminated in some way because of fecal matter or manure. In the developed world, the chances of getting this disease is quite low. For those who travel internationally or those who live in poverty in the developing world, the risks of Typhoid fever are quite high.
How Is Typhoid Fever Treated?
When discovered, Typhoid fever can be treated with antibiotics. One of the great challenges of this disease, however, is that it is becoming highly resistant to many of the first-line antibiotics that have been successful in the past. All people who are diagnosed with this disease are also encouraged to avoid food handling for others until it can be confirmed that they are not a chronic carrier.
If someone is experiencing flu-like symptoms for more than 7 days, then it is important to see a medical professional right away. Although a majority of people will typically recover from Typhoid fever, it is not guaranteed. Some antibiotics may struggle to work, but there are treatment options. Staying away from unsafe water sources and receiving the vaccine are the best proactive methods of preventing disease transmission.