Cholera outbreak in Haiti begins to subside

Haitian Refugees

The cholera outbreak began among Haitian refugees from the countryside outside the capital. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

A recent outbreak of cholera in Haiti has possibly begun to subside, but there are still many afflicted. Haitian officials are pointing to fewer deaths being recorded, so the outbreak may be slowing down, at least. Haiti has experienced severe turmoil since the earthquake in Haiti earlier this year. Those who caught cholera all appear to have contracted the disease from the same region.

Cholera outbreak slowing

A recent outbreak of cholera in Haiti has infected people in the countryside, but it appears to be slowing. Since the outbreak of cholera last week, more than 250 have died and more than 3,000 have been infected, according to the New York Times. However, the frequency of fatalities has slowed, according to Haitian officials. The earthquake in Haiti left millions of people homeless and killed more than 10,000. Many people have been taking up residence in tent cities outside of Port Au Prince, the Haitian capital. However, most of the infected appear to have been in the vicinity of the Artibonite river, which is in a rural area outside of the capital. Haitian officials and aid workers are trying to contain the outbreak outside of the capital. It is the first outbreak of cholera in Haiti in decades.

Cholera toxin

The disease cholera is caused by an infection of the small intestine, according to the cholera Wikipedia page. The cholera disease, or what causes cholera, is typically the presence of a bacterium, vibrio cholerae. It is usually ingested through contaminated drinking water or food. Cholera symptoms include diarrhea, fever, abdominal pain and dehydration. Treatment is typically intravenous fluids, rest and may include antibiotics. The malnourished are among the most at risk for infection. Untreated drinking water and improper sewage disposal are the most common causes of outbreaks.

Outbreak adds to nation’s turmoil

Though the outbreak may be beginning to subside, Haiti is a torn country. Political instability and widespread unrest will make the upcoming elections difficult.

Sources

New York Times

Cholera on Wikipedia

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