By NewsDesk   @bactiman63

Taiwan health officials are reporting (computer translated) a typhoid cluster in the northern part of the country, which affected three people in one household.

Salmonella serotype Typhi
Typhoid image/CDC

A woman in her 30s, her young child and an Indonesian nurse in her 30s were confirmed to have the disease on July 2, Tuesday last week and Wednesday last week respectively.

There was no history of international travel.

While the mother and child were symptomatic, the caregiver was not. Health officials are working on locating the source of the infection.

In Taiwan this year, four local transmission cases of typhoid have been reported, while 10 cases were imported.

Typhoid fever is a potentially life-threatening illness caused by the bacterium Salmonella typhi. Salmonella typhi lives only in humans. Persons with typhoid fever carry the bacteria in their bloodstream and intestinal tract. In addition, a small number of persons, called carriers, recover from typhoid fever but continue to carry the bacteria. Both ill persons and carriers shed S.typhi in their feces.

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You can get typhoid fever if you eat food or drink beverages that have been handled by a person who is shedding S. typhi or if sewage contaminated with S. typhi bacteria gets into the water you use for drinking or washing food. Therefore, typhoid fever is more common in areas of the world where handwashing is less frequent and water is likely to be contaminated with sewage.

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Typhoid fever can be successfully treated with appropriate antibiotics, and persons given antibiotics usually begin to feel better within 2 to 3 days.

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