Infected with Ameba? Not curable?

caribmike

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Jul 9, 2009
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What a Dominican refers to when stating she has an ameba (?) infection? And it is not curable?

I know what a ameba is but what illness could be caused by them.

Dorota, I am sure you can help me out? ;)
 

Cdn_Gringo

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Apr 29, 2014
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Gastrointestinal Amebiasis - may or may not also be called dysentery - is treatable
Naegleria fowleri - brain eating parasite - not treatable.
 

caribmike

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Jul 9, 2009
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Thanks, but definitely not dysentery. The brain eating one is rather difficult to diagnose here I am afraid :D but sure this isn't the case too...

Gastrointestinal Amebiasis - may or may not also be called dysentery - is treatable
Naegleria fowleri - brain eating parasite - not treatable.
 

amp

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Oct 5, 2010
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I think there are some Dominicans who use it to say a bacterial virus. I've heard it a few times before myself and was confused as well.
 

dv8

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Sep 27, 2006
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i guess dominicans refer to lots of intestinal parasite infections as amoeba. there are also many species of amoeba that cause amoebiasis. basically you get infected by injecting food and/or water contaminated with the feces of another carriers. their stool contains cysts that then develop in the intestines of an infected person.

because amoebas live off the "leftovers" passing the intestines they may happily stay there for a while and not cause any symptoms, even for years. they can, however damage intestinal walls, liver and even stomach cavity. treatments are not necessarily successful. full course of treatment can last close to a month. you just know that people here would not continue to take their medication for that long, seeing that you start to feel better within two days or so.

you could say that it is possible to get rid of amoebas completely but it takes dedication. in addition to this many get reinfected continuously, especially if they live in poor and dirty barrios where the risk of contamination of the water is high.
 

caribmike

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Jul 9, 2009
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That is what I am thinking to. Do you have an idea to what bacterial infection they might refer with it? She says it is from street food. First thought was salmonella, but it isn't.

I think there are some Dominicans who use it to say a bacterial virus. I've heard it a few times before myself and was confused as well.
 

caribmike

Gold
Jul 9, 2009
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What would be needed? What medication? How a doctor can diagnose it? Blood test?

i guess dominicans refer to lots of intestinal parasite infections as amoeba. there are also many species of amoeba that cause amoebiasis. basically you get infected by injecting food and/or water contaminated with the feces of another carriers. their stool contains cysts that then develop in the intestines of an infected person.

because amoebas live off the "leftovers" passing the intestines they may happily stay there for a while and not cause any symptoms, even for years. they can, however damage intestinal walls, liver and even stomach cavity. treatments are not necessarily successful. full course of treatment can last close to a month. you just know that people here would not continue to take their medication for that long, seeing that you start to feel better within two days or so.

you could say that it is possible to get rid of amoebas completely but it takes dedication. in addition to this many get reinfected continuously, especially if they live in poor and dirty barrios where the risk of contamination of the water is high.
 

dv8

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Sep 27, 2006
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What would be needed? What medication? How a doctor can diagnose it? Blood test?

stool test detects the presence of cysts and blood test detects antibodies. the doctor will do both. treatments depends on the type of infection. for amoebiasis the treatment is usually metronidazol 500 mg, 3 times a day for about a week. one pill costs about 10 pesos and upwards. if it is a different type of a parasite or a bacteria mebendazol, tinidazol, secnidazol, amonosidina, albendazol or nitazoxanida can be used. treatments last from single dose to a week.
 

KateP

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May 28, 2004
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I've had amoeba about 4 times and was told by a doctor that once you have it, it tends to come back once in a while. 3 of the 4 times I ended up staying at least overnight at a hospital because by then I was quite dehydrated from all the throwing up and all. I was treated with antibiotics and metronidazol if I remember correctly and was better within a few days. At least the last 2 times I'm pretty sure it was from eating salad at my workplace that hadn't been washed properly. Now, every 5 to 6 months I take Amoebrix as a preventive measure and I haven't gotten sick again in the past 7 years.
 

Dandman

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May 17, 2004
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Entamoeba Histolytica.....is a common one and is difficult to get rid of....multiple antibiotics and Metronidazol are important....
 

william webster

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Jan 16, 2009
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we have both had various bouts.... the tests are not totally accurate (IMO) but do indicate amoeba activity/presence.

you take what they give you at the time and cross your fingers.

I ahve read that they cannot be eradicated... so we take precautionary steps as suggested above every few months.... just to be safe.

Bloating, gas, are signs that pop up .

it can come from anywhere here....
the food, or the hands of the food preparer.... or your own after shaking a a few hands

we just treat it as part of the drill -- life in the tropics
 

Uzin

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Oct 26, 2005
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Some of my friends take that preventative measure tablets too (after they had it a couple of times) and say it does work - but who knows, they might have just been lucky.

The key to this is to deal with it quickly, a simple traveller's tummy upset goes away after 2 or 3 days, but after that rush to a doctor/hospital for test and treatment. I had a friend who didn't go and after over a week was nearly wasting away due to dehydration and not being able to hold food - could have been very serious.
 

william webster

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Jan 16, 2009
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correct -- this goes way beyond travelers' tummy...

emergencies arise.......

big article on malnutrition in India due to contaminated water

ever see people bathing in a river here?

all sorts of hikers come down w/ amoebas after a refreshing hike in the mountains and a thirsty sip from from a mountain stream.... of glacier pure water.

that a family of bears have taken advantage of just a stone's throw upstream..

Giardia infection (giardiasis) Definition - Diseases and Conditions - Mayo Clinic

very common for mountain climbers - they tell me
 

Dan Spinnover

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Nov 1, 2010
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someone years back on DR1 said that the common tropical parasite stays in the stomach, but an amoeba will go past the stomach barrier and invade the bloodstream.

ETA:
tip: I'm not a doctor or even in the medical field. I've found a very simple cure for parasites: lots of black pepper on a food. Not a shake or two... covered so that you can't see the food underneath. I tried hot sauce, but it's not as effective. Probably because it passes through too quickly.
 

arturo

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Mar 14, 2002
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I think norovirus is very common, and VERY unpleasant. It goes by several names: Monteczuma's revenge, travellers tummy, etc. Vomiting, diarrhea, and nausea are the common symptoms. Frequent hand washing and avoiding poorly handled food help but feces to food contact is not always easy to avoid. Welcome to Paradise!