In uncomplicated and properly treated cases of amoebic dysentery, the mortality rate (death rate) is less than 1%. Once dysentery diagnosis is confirmed, there are two approaches for amoebic dysentery treatment:
During amoebic dysentery treatment, drugs should be consumed only after consulting a physician and in case of complications, the infected individual should be hospitalized. Extra care should be taken if the affected person is a child (under 2 years of age), or is an immunocompromised, malnourished, or pregnant adult.
The Two Main Amoebic Dysentery Treatment Measures
Amoebic Dysentery Treatment Through Medications
Two rounds of medication should be provided during amoebic dysentery treatment.
First Round Of Drugs
Antibiotics like metronidazole (first choice) and tinidazole are commonly used to kill the parasites, and these are the drugs of choice for dysentery as well as invasive (hepatic) amoebiasis. Two 400mg tablets should be taken three times a day, for five days. Pregnant or breast feeding women are not advised to opt for such medication.
Second Round Of Drugs
The first line of drugs should be followed by a 10-day course of diloxanide furoate, as this will help eliminate the parasite from the intestine.
Amoebic Dysentery Treatment For Asymptomatic Patients
In some amoebic dysentery cases, the primary dysentery symptoms lay hidden in individuals who unknowingly act as carriers of this disease. Such patients who don’t exhibit blatant symptoms are treated through a separate procedure.
Diloxanide furoate is the drug of choice for people who show no clinical symptoms. This is mainly because metronidazole or tinidazole are relatively not effective in such cases.
Pain killers and muscle relaxants can be used for relieving abdominal or stomach pain. Loperamide medication can be taken to slow the bowel and prevent dehydration. The consumption of alcohol should be strictly avoided during treatment.
Amoebic Dysentery Treatment – Managing The Condition
As amoebic dysentery causes the rapid loss of water, leading to dehydration, replacing the lost bodily fluids is a critical step that will help manage the condition. The following tips are recommended for proper management.
- Commercially available ORS (Oral Rehydration Salts) solution sachets supplied by the World Health Organization/UNICEF/CDC provide a simple and effective way to prevent dehydration
- Drinking rice water three times a day can relieve diarrhea and remove the parasite from the body
- Probiotics are also helpful in countering this condition
- Drink lots of soft drinks, juices, and bottled water
- Stick to a balanced diet and avoid milk products
- Get adequate bed rest
- In severe cases of dehydration, intravenous (IV) fluid and electrolyte replacement measures will be useful
- While travelling to a tropical country, it is advisable to carry a self-antibiotic treatment regimen of metronidazole (with the doctor’s prescription)
- Gastric suction or blood transfusion may be required in rare cases
- Liver abscess can be aspirated, in complicated cases, to prevent its rupture
With proper medication, the bowel will heal completely. The liver abscesses may disappear within 8 months to 2 years. Recurrence is very common in amoebiasis and therefore stool samples should be tested regularly after antibiotic amoebic dysentery treatment to ensure that the parasite has been completely eliminated from the intestine. In any case, dysentery prevention should always be given top priority.