Water Borne Diseases

Bacterial diseases

DiseaseCausative organismMode of spreadSymptoms
TyphoidSalmonella typhiContaminated food, water, milk, unwash­ed raw vegetables and fliesContinuous fever which increases day by day Temperature higher in evening than morning, body ache, headache and constipation. Haemorrhage from an ulceration in small intestine
CholeraVibrio choleraeWater or food con­taminated by bacteria from stools of chol­era patientPainless diarrhoea , vomiting, 30-40 stools per day which soon becomes typically watery and colourless with flakes of mucous floating in them
Bacterial Diaorhoea Shigella spp.Contaminated food, water and by direct personal contactDiarrhoea, with blood and dysentry mucous in the stools along with severe gripping pain in the abdomen. Stools not too frequent (4-10 per day), faecal matter scanty. Patient looks ill
LeptospirosisLeptospiraRodents primary hosts-carry organ­isms in kidneys. Infection by wading or swimming in water contaminated with rodent urineFever, pain in legs, nausea, vomiting are common, congestion of the conjunctival blood vessels around corneas of the eyes
Viral diseases
Infective HepatitisHepatitis virusFood and water contaminated with virus in stoolsLoss of appetite, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea, accompanied with fever. Urine dark coloured. Eye and skin appear yellow

Protozoan diseases

Amoebic dysenteryEntamoeba histolyticaIngestion of cysts in food and waterAbdominal discomfort and diarrhoea, with or without blood or mucous in stools, fever, chills and gripping pain in abdomen
Diarrhoea Giardia (=Lamblia)intestinalisFood or water con­taminated with fae­ces having cystsIntestinal disorders leading to epigastric pain, abdominal discomfort, loss of appetite, headache and loose bowels
BilharziaSchistosoma sppCercaria larvae of flukes in water penetrate skin of persons wading in water Allergy-like itch, rash, aches, fever, eosinophilia etc.When infection becomes heavy, eggs may block arterioles of lungs cardio-pulmonary water causing schistosomiasis and may lead to congestive heart failure.
Guinea wormDracunculus medinensisUnfiltered waterBlister near the ankle, causing allergy and aches

Vector borne diseases related with water


Causative organisms




MalariaPlasmodium sp Female Anopheles(primary or final hosts)Man (inter­mediate hosts)Shivering, chills and sweating. As chills subside body temperature rises as high as 106° F. When temperature comes down patient sweats profusely and becomes comfortable until next attack which takes place at regular intervals
Filaria (Elephantiasis)Wuchereria (=filaria)Culex fatigansMan (final hosts)Enlargement of limbs and scrotum
DengueBarbo-virusAedes aegyptiMan (reservoir)Sudden onset of moderately high fever, excruciating joint pain, intense pain behind eyes, a second rise in temp following brief remission, reduction in neutrophilic white blood cells

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