Possible causes of Trachoma infections.
Trachoma is caused by certain subtypes of Chlamydia trachomatis, a bacterium that can also cause the sexually transmitted infection chlamydia.
Trachoma spreads through contact with discharge from the eyes or nose of an infected person. Hands, clothing, towels, and insects can all be routes for transmission. In developing countries, eye-seeking flies also are a means of transmission.
Leading factors Trachoma disease.
Some leading factors that increase your risk of contracting trachoma are;
- Unavailability of funds; Trachoma is primarily a disease of extremely poor populations in developing countries.
- Overcrowded arena or building; People living in close contact are at greater risk of spreading infection.
- Poor sanitary conditions, water, air pollution, and lack of hygiene, such as unclean faces or hands, help spread the disease.
- Children and women are most likely victims In areas where the disease is active, it’s most common in children
- Gender factor; In some areas, women’s rate of contracting the disease is two to six times higher than that of men.
- Insects; People living in areas with problems controlling the fly population may be more susceptible to infection.
Bad and dirty toilet; Populations without access to good and neat toilet are prone to infections generally and not necessarily the Trachoma disease alone. The pit type of communal toilet have a higher risk of contracting the disease.
Issues with the Trachoma infection.
One episode of trachoma caused by Chlamydia trachomatis is easily treated with early detection and the use of antibiotics. Repeated or secondary infections can lead to complications, such as;
- Reddish eye
- Pains in the eyes
- Defective eyelid.
- Itching corneal
- Impaired vision.
- Eyelid scarring.
Precautions and prevention of trachoma infections.
If you’ve been treated for trachoma with antibiotics or surgery, reinfection is always a concern. For your protection and for the safety of others, be sure that family members or others you live with are screened and, if necessary, treated for trachoma.
The disease can occur worldwide but is more common in the Middle East, North Africa, sub-Saharan Africa, and areas of southern Asia and China. When in regions where trachoma is common, take extra care in practicing good hygiene, which can help prevent infection.
Good hygienic practices
- Regular hand and face wash; Keeping faces and hands clean may help break the cycle of reinfection and transmission
- Insecticide control; Reducing fly and other insect populations in our homes, environment, and offices can help eliminate a major source of transmission.
- Proper waste management control; Proper disposing of dirt, polluted water, pets, and human waste can reduce breeding grounds for flies and other insects.
- No access to good drinkable water; Having a fresh or well-treated water source nearby can help improve hygienic conditions.
Treatment for Trachoma infection.
Every disease/infection has prescribed treatment for it, eighter to totally curb it or bring it to the barest minimum manageable. Some treatments can be difficult owing to the stubborn nature of the ailment but in other cases, treatment can simple and easy. Treatment for the disease is relatively simple. A single oral dose of antibiotic is the preferred treatment, plus making safe water available and teaching simple cleanliness. Because of cultural differences and widespread poverty in endemic areas, this regimen is difficult to implement on a universal scale.
S = surgical care
A = antibiotics
F = facial cleanliness
E = environmental improvement. (Link hazard)
Treatment involves screening communities for the presence of trachoma in children 1-9 years of age. When over 10 % are found to have the clinical disease, the entire community is treated with antibiotics. In areas with less disease, only targeted groups are treated.
Due to the contagiousness of trachoma, it is necessary to treat all who might be in contact with the infected individuals.
The actual treatment is the one-time use of azithromycin (Zithromax) pills (currently the treatment of choice) or the topical use of 1% tetracycline. (Achromycin) ointment.
When the disease has progressed to inward-turning of the lashes, surgery is necessary to correct this and prevent the lashes from scarring the cornea. Performance of this surgery can be taught to nurses or other medical personnel. Corneal transplantation surgery may be required if scarring exists in the eye corneal, only a qualified ophthalmologist can perform the surgical operation. Prevention should be the best practice to avoid progression into inward-turning of the eyelashes.
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