AMOEBIASIS
Last Updated : 7/7/2009
Dr. Ira Shah
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What is the

Amoebiasis

?

Amoebiasis (pronounced as ami-b-asis) is a germ that mainly leads to diarrhea. It is caused by a parasite called Entamoeba histolytica.

How does Amoebiasis spread ?
Amoebiasis usually occurs by consumption of contaminated water or food that contains the cysts of entamoeba. Most often it spreads by house flies and cockroaches.

What are the

symptoms of Amoebiasis

?

Children with amebiasis present with loose motions with blood and mucus, foul smelling flatus and uneasiness. Chronic infection may lead to weight loss and malnourished children. There is pain in lower abdomen especially on passing a bowel motion. If infection period is long it can involve liver and other body organs also leading to a condition called as amoebic abscess.

How is

diagnosis of Amoebiasis

made ?

Amoebiasis is diagnosed by examination of stool and isolating the cysts of the entamoeba.

How is Amoebiasis treated ?
Amoebiasis is a 100% treatable disease and specific antibiotics such as metronidazole or nitazoxanide may be used for the treatment under a doctor’s prescription. If the disease is advanced and has lead to formation of abscess then the abscess may need to be removed by surgery.

How can Amoebiasis be prevented ?
Filtration of water and boiling of water kills cysts that cause amebiasis. There is no vaccine available for prevention of amoebic infection.



Contributor Information and Disclosures

Dr. Ira Shah
Consultant Pediatrician, B.J.Wadia Hospital for Children, Mumbai, India


First Created : 1/9/2001

References

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