Symptoms of Escherichia coli infection and how to treat

THEEscherichia coli, also calledE. coli, is a bacterium naturally found in the intestines of people without symptoms being noticed, however when present in large quantities or when the person is infected by a different type ofE. coli, it is possible that intestinal symptoms may appear, such as diarrhea, abdominal pain and nausea, for example.

Despite intestinal infections byEscherichia coli being common, this bacterium also causes urinary infections, which can be perceived through pain or burning when urinating and the stronger smell of pee, being more frequent in women.

Symptoms of infection byEscherichia coli

Symptoms of infection byE. colithey appear about 3 to 4 days after contact with the bacteria through the consumption of contaminated food and water or due to the arrival of the bacteria in the urinary tract due to the proximity between the anus and the vagina, in the case of women. Thus, the symptoms of infection vary according to the affected site:

Intestinal InfectionE. coli

Symptoms of intestinal infection byE. coli are the same as a gastroenteritis caused by viruses, for example, the main symptoms being:

  • Constant diarrhea;
  • Bloody stools;
  • Abdominal pain or frequent cramps;
  • Nausea and vomiting;
  • General malaise and tiredness;
  • Fever below 38ºC;
  • Loss of appetite.

If the symptoms do not disappear after 5 to 7 days, it is important to go to the doctor for tests to identify the bacteria. If E. coli infection is confirmed, the doctor must indicate the use of antibiotics, as well as rest, light food and plenty of fluids.

Urinary tract infectionE. coli

Urinary infection caused byE. coliit is more common in women due to the proximity of the anus to the vagina, making it easier for bacteria to transmit from one place to another. To prevent this, women should drink plenty of water, avoid the constant use of douches in the vaginal area and clean this area from the vagina to the anus.

To find out if there is a possibility of having urinary tract infectionEscherichia coli, select the symptoms in the following test:

  1. 1. Pain or burning sensation when urinating
  2. 2. Frequent and sudden urge to urinate in small quantities
  3. 3. Feeling of not being able to empty your bladder
  4. 4. Feeling of heaviness or discomfort in the bladder region
  5. 5. Cloudy or bloody urine
  6. 6. Persistent low fever (between 37.5º and 38º)
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The diagnosis of urinary tract infectionEscherichia coli it is done by the doctor according to the symptoms presented by the person and the result of the type 1 urine test and urine culture, which indicate if there is an infection and what is the best antibiotic to treat.

How the treatment is done

Treatment of infection byEscherichia coli it is done according to the type of infection, the person's age and the symptoms presented, with rest and the use of antibiotics, such as Levofloxacin, Gentamicin, Ampicillin and Cephalosporin, for example, for 8 to 10 days or according to the doctor. with the doctor's recommendation.

In the case of E. coli cause severe diarrhea with blood in the stool, it may also be indicated to use serum to prevent dehydration. In addition, depending on the severity of the symptoms, the doctor may recommend medications that relieve pain and discomfort, such as Paracetamol, for example.

It is important that during the treatment of infection byEscherichia colithe person has a light diet, giving preference to the consumption of fruits and vegetables, in addition to drinking plenty of fluids to help eliminate the bacteria, in the case of urinary infection, and prevent dehydration, in the case of intestinal infection.

Learn more about the treatment forE. coli.