Typhoid Fever Symptoms: What to Look Out For

Typhoid Fever Symptoms: What to Look Out For

Typhoid fever is a bacterial infection caused by the bacterium Salmonella serotype Typhi. It is a major public health concern in many parts of the world, especially in areas with poor sanitation and limited access to clean drinking water. Symptoms of typhoid fever typically appear 1 to 3 weeks after exposure to the bacteria. Common signs and symptoms include:

  • High fever
  • Headache
  • Abdominal pain
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Rose-colored spots
  • Frenzy

Typhoid fever is a serious illness and can lead to dangerous complications if left untreated. It is crucial to seek medical attention promptly if you suspect you or someone else may have contracted typhoid fever.

What Are The Typhoid Fever Symptoms?

  • High Fever

Sustained high fever is a hallmark symptom of typhoid fever. The fever may gradually increase in intensity over several days, and it can reach as high as 104-105°F (40-41°C).

  • Headache

Intense headaches are often due to the fever and the impact of the infection on the body.

  • Abdominal Pain

Many individuals with typhoid fever experience abdominal discomfort and tenderness. This pain is often in the area around the belly button.

  • Weakness and Fatigue

Typhoid fever can cause extreme fatigue and weakness, making it difficult for the person to carry out daily activities.

  • Loss of Appetite

There is a reduced interest in eating, and the person may experience a loss of appetite.

  • Diarrhea or Constipation

Bowel movement changes can occur, leading to either diarrhea or constipation.

  • Rose-Colored Spots

A unique characteristic of typhoid fever is the appearance of pink-colored rashes, known as “rose spots,” on the skin. These spots are small and slightly raised.

What Are the Reasons For Typhoid Fever?

  • Contaminated Food and Water

Consuming food or beverages with water contaminated by the Salmonella Typhi bacteria is the most common mode of transmission. This can occur in areas with poor sanitation and inadequate water treatment systems.

  • Poor Sanitation

Inadequate sanitation practices, such as open defecation or improper waste disposal, can lead to the contamination of water sources and food, facilitating the spread of bacteria.

  • Unhygienic Food Handling

Improper food handling and poor hygiene by food handlers can also lead to the contamination of food products with the Salmonella Typhi bacteria.

  • Traveling to Endemic Areas

Traveling to regions where typhoid fever is prevalent increases the risk of exposure to the bacteria. Endemic areas are typically in developing countries with inadequate sanitation infrastructure.

  • Close Contact with Infected Individuals

Typhoid fever is a highly contagious disease, and close contact with an infected person can lead to transmission of the bacteria.

  • Carrier State

Some individuals can become carriers of the Salmonella Typhi bacteria, even after recovering from the infection. They may show no symptoms but continue to shed the bacteria in their feces and urine, potentially infecting others.

  • Contaminated Healthcare Facilities

Inadequate infection control practices in healthcare settings can lead to the transmission of bacteria from one patient to another.

  • Lack of Vaccination

Failure to receive the typhoid fever vaccine increases the risk of contracting the disease, especially for individuals traveling to high-risk areas.

Which Treatment Is Best For Typhoid? 

  • Fluoroquinolones

Ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin are examples of fluoroquinolone antibiotics commonly used to treat uncomplicated cases of typhoid fever in adults and older children. However, their use in children and pregnant women is due to potential side effects.

  • Third-Generation Cephalosporin

Ceftriaxone and cefixime are examples of third-generation cephalosporin antibiotics that are effective against Salmonella Typhi in children and pregnant women.

  • Azithromycin

In cases where fluoroquinolones and cephalosporin cause resistance, azithromycin is best as an alternative treatment option.

Can Newborn Suffer This Fever?

Typhoid fever is relatively uncommon in newborns and young infants. It is more common in older children and adults. The risk of typhoid fever in newborns is generally low due to the presence of protective maternal antibodies acquired during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Newborns and young infants have weaker immune systems than older children and adults, making them more susceptible to severe infections. If a newborn contracts typhoid fever, the symptoms may be more powerful and require immediate medical attention.

If a newborn shows any signs of fever or illness, seeking immediate medical attention for proper diagnosis and treatment is essential. The healthcare provider will be able to determine the cause of the fever and provide appropriate care to ensure the baby’s well-being.

For Which Age Is Typhoid Fever Cause Of Danger To Life? 

  • Children under 5, especially those younger than 2 years, are at an increased risk of severe typhoid fever. Their immune systems are still developing, making them more susceptible to serious infections.
  • The elderly, typically those over the age of 60, may have weakened immune systems, making them more vulnerable to severe infections, including typhoid fever.
  • Pregnant women are more susceptible to severe infections, including typhoid fever, and the disease can also pose risks to the developing fetus.
  • Malnutrition can weaken the immune system, making individuals more susceptible to severe infections.
  • People with chronic health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, or lung disease may have a higher risk of complications if they contract typhoid fever.

How To Avoid This Fever?

  • Consider getting vaccinated against typhoid fever, especially if you plan to travel to areas where the disease is prevalent. Two types of typhoid vaccine are available: the injectable vaccine and the oral vaccine. Consult a healthcare professional to determine the best option for your circumstances.
  • Drink and use only clean, treated water. Avoid consuming water from unknown sources or untreated water, including ice cubes made from untreated water.
  • Eat only thoroughly cooked and hot foods. Avoid raw or undercooked foods, particularly meats and seafood. Be cautious with street food and food from street vendors.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and clean water before eating, after using the restroom, and after handling potentially contaminated items.
  • Be mindful of the source and cleanliness of the food and beverages you consume. Avoid eating at places with questionable hygiene practices.
  • If you prepare food, practice good handling techniques to avoid cross-contamination between raw and cooked foods.
  • Maintain good personal hygiene and encourage others to do the same. Dispose of waste properly and avoid open defecation.
  • Be aware of the regions where typhoid fever is more common and take extra 
  • If you know someone with typhoid fever, avoid close contact with them until they have been treated with antibiotics and are no longer shedding the bacteria.
  • Keep yourself updated on travel advisories and health alerts issued by health authorities about typhoid fever outbreaks or risk areas.

Bottom Line

Typhoid fever is a bacterial infection. Preventing typhoid fever involves practicing good hygiene, drinking clean and treated water, washing hands frequently, and consuming food from reputable sources. Additionally, a vaccine is available for typhoid fever, which can benefit individuals traveling to high-risk areas or those with an increased likelihood of exposure to the bacteria.


  • Is there a specific demographic more susceptible to typhoid fever?

Typhoid fever can affect anyone, but it is more common in regions with poor sanitation and limited access to clean water. Travelers to areas with high rates of typhoid fever are also at risk.

  • When should someone seek medical attention for suspected typhoid fever?

If you experience persistent high fever, severe headache, abdominal pain, or any other symptoms of typhoid fever.

  • Is there a specific treatment for typhoid fever?

Commonly used antibiotics include ciprofloxacin, ceftriaxone, and azithromycin.

For more details also read this article: https://healthsight.co/health-screening-quality-of-life/