Rainy Season, Recognize Symptoms of Leptospirosis Bacteria

Rainy Season, Recognize Symptoms of Leptospirosis Bacteria

Rainy Season, Recognize Symptoms of Leptospirosis Bacteria

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Rainy Season, Recognize Symptoms of Leptospirosis Bacteria

In this rainy season, many diseases lurk on us, one of which is leptospirosis infection. Leptospirosis is an infection caused by the bacteria leptospira, and this bacterium can attack both animals and humans. This disease is a seasonal disease, many cases of this report are found in the rainy season in tropical countries and in the early fall in countries with 4 seasons.

Indonesia is one of the countries with many cases of leptospirosis, ranking third in the number of deaths due to leptospirosis. This infection spread in almost all of Indonesia with the highest incidence along with the rainy season and floods.

How do you transmit leptospirosis?

Leptospirosis is transmitted through contact with water, soil, or mud that has been contaminated by the urine of animals infected with leptospira. Long contact with a pool of urine contaminated water or drinking contaminated water can also cause a person to become infected. Sometimes, the bite of an infected animal can also cause transmission. Mice, dogs, pigs, and cows are animals that can transmit leptospirosis. Human-to-human transmission is rarely reported.

These bacteria can then enter through injured skin, or mucous membranes in the eyes, nose, lips and mouth. People with a high risk of contracting leptospirosis are workers in fields, agriculture, plantations, farms, miners, or veterinarians

What are the signs and symptoms of leptospirosis?

The incubation period of leptospira is around 7-14 days (average 10 days), and symptoms that can arise include:

  • Sudden shivering fever
  • Head pain
  • Pain
  • Muscle pain, a typical symptom is tenderness in the calf muscle
  • Abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting
  • Irritation and redness of the eye accompanied by photophobia (fear of light)
  • Skin rash

In most people, these symptoms can disappear within 5-7 days, but in about 10% of patients can fall into dangerous leptospirosis conditions.

Is leptospirosis dangerous?

About 10% of leptospirosis will progress to a more severe condition called Weil's disease, usually occurring after 1-3 days more mild symptoms arise. Symptoms that arise include:

  • Yellow fever, can be seen from yellowing skin and eyes with enlarged liver and spleen.
  • Kidney failure, kidney cell death.
  • Spontaneous bleeding, nosebleeds, bleeding spots on the skin. If there is lung involvement, patients can complain of shortness of breath, chest pain, and coughing up blood.

In 50% of patients with severe leptospirosis, infection can spread to the brain causing meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain) and encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) which is characterized by neck stiffness, headache, vomiting, until convulsions.

How to treat leptospirosis?

In most cases, leptospirosis is found in mild conditions, treatment with antibiotics for 5-7 days depends on the response of the disease. Antibiotics must be given as soon as possible and must be spent. Stopping antibiotics when symptoms improve can cause bacteria that have not been killed to re-infect. Fever-lowering drugs such as paracetamol and ibuprofen can also be given to reduce symptoms.

In the case of severe leptospirosis, patients must be treated and observed, sometimes also needed assistive devices such as ventilators to help breathing, dialysis to replace kidney function, and intravenous fluids as a source of nutrition for the body

How to prevent leptospirosis?

Measures to prevent leptospirosis must be based on knowledge of who is at high risk and the environmental factors that influence it. The following prevention methods can be done:

Control the source of infection

  • Vaccinate against pets that can get leptospirosis
  • Fight wild animals like mice in the environment
  • Don't let your pet eat wild rats

Control the transmission route

  • Avoid swimming in stagnant water sources that might be contaminated with urine from animals infected with leptospirosis
  • Wear footwear when going out of the house
  • Make sure the source of drinking water is to bathe and drink you clean

Prevents infection in humans

  • Vaccination in humans so far has not produced satisfactory results
  • Give antibiotics for prevention for those at high risk for contracting

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