Asiatic cholera

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Related to Asiatic cholera: Colera, Cólera


an acute infectious enteritis endemic and epidemic in Asia, caused by Vibrio cholerae, marked by severe diarrhea and vomiting, with extreme fluid and electrolyte depletion, and by muscle cramps and prostration. Called also Asiatic cholera.

Immunization and modern methods of sanitation have all but eliminated cholera epidemics in the United States and Europe, but they are still a danger in many other parts of the world, such as in India and many tropical regions. Travelers to cholera-ridden areas should protect themselves by vaccination, but this does not provide complete immunity. The local drinking water should be boiled; uncooked foods should be avoided; food should be protected from flies; and fruits and vegetables should be peeled with their rinds discarded.
Transmission. Vibrio cholerae is carried in the cholera victim's feces, urine, and vomitus, and is transmitted to others in contaminated water or food. Once it has reached the intestines, the intestinal lining becomes inflamed and the passages distended with a thin, watery fluid.
Symptoms. Symptoms begin to appear at any time from a few hours to 5 days after contact; the usual incubation period is 3 days. When the disease is at its peak, diarrhea and vomiting occur with such frequency and abundance that dehydration results very rapidly. The skin is cyanotic and shriveled, the eyes are sunken and the voice is feeble. There may be painful muscular cramps throughout the body.
Treatment. Because alkaline substances are lost in the vomitus and feces, acidosis as well as dehydration must be combated. The fluids and electrolytes are replaced either orally or by administration of a water, glucose, and electrolyte solution. Acid intoxication may require intravenous administration of sodium bicarbonate. Guidelines for cholera control are available from the World Health Organization.
Asiatic cholera see cholera.
cholera infan´tum a noncontagious diarrhea occurring in infants; formerly common in the summer months.
pancreatic cholera a condition marked by profuse watery diarrhea, hypokalemia, and usually achlorhydria, and due to an islet-cell tumor (other than beta cell) of the pancreas.


An acute epidemic infectious disease caused by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. A soluble toxin elaborated in the intestinal tract by the bacterium activates the adenylate cylase of the mucosa, causing active secretion of an isotonic fluid resulting in profuse watery diarrhea, extreme loss of fluid and electrolytes, and dehydration and collapse, but no gross morphologic change in the intestinal mucosa. Synonym(s): Asiatic cholera
[L. a bilious disease, fr. G. cholē, bile]

Asiatic cholera


Asiatic cholera

A common form of cholera caused by the organism Vibrio cholerae.
References in periodicals archive ?
The newspapers in Philadelphia and other major east coast port cities showed a morbid fascination with Asiatic cholera as it progressed across Western Europe in the fall and winter of 1831-1832.
In 1911, when the journal was first published, typical articles included "Modern Methods of Controlling the Spread of Asiatic Cholera," "Sanitation of Bakeries and Restaurant Kitchens," and "The Need of Exact Accounting for Still-Births.
It is said to have been used with success in the treatment of an epidemic of Asiatic cholera in Cincinnati in 1849 and 1850.
Anniversaries: 1832: Asiatic cholera first appeared in Ireland in Belfast; 1879: Birth of German-born Swiss physicist and mathematician Albert Einstein; 1925: The first transatlantic radio broadcast was made; 1932: American inventor George Eastman, founder of the Kodak photographic company, committed suicide; 1981: England batsman Ken Barrington died of a heart attack touring the West Indies with the England team; 1991: The Birmingham Six jailed for the city pub bombings were released.