What is Leptospirosis and how to prevent it during flood season

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The habagat has been steadily bringing rain to our islands in the past few days. Flooding is frequently reported in different parts of the country. And with the waters comes the rising concern for leptospirosis.

What is leptospirosis?

Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease from Leptospira. It affects both humans and animals.

How will I get leptospirosis?

The bacteria Leptospira can easily get into your skin through cuts or abrasions from floods, wet ground or maybe a plant that is contaminated with rat’s urine. It can also get into your body through the mucous membranes of the eyes, nose and mouth.

What are the early signs of the disease?

  • high fever
  • severe headache
  • chills
  • redness in the eyes
  • jaundice or yellowing of the skin
  • dark or brown urine
  • reduced amount of urine output
  • diarrhea
  • rash
  • hemorrhage in skin and mucous membranes

How to protect yourself?

  • Do not tread on flood water or water that could be contaminated by rat urine
  • Use boots when walking in flood water
  • Wrap your legs with plastic if you are going to dip into waters higher than your boots
  • Get rid of the rats at home
  • Always maintain the cleanliness in your house.

Leptospirosis is a deadly disease if left unchecked. It affects the major organs of our body such as the liver, kidney, heart and even the brain. If you have the signs and symptoms mentioned above, get yourself checked. This is curable with early detection.

Source:

Water related diseases: Leptospirosis

 

 Featured image via wikipedia