Giardiasis symptoms in Child

Children have a greater risk of infection of Giardiasis than adult because they have more frequent exposure to excrement, especially if they are still using diapers often spend time in daycare.


What is Giardiasis?

Giardiasis is an infection of the small intestine caused by a parasite called Giardia lamblia. This disease is commonly found in low-lying areas or has poor water quality, especially in densely populated developing countries. 

Parasites that can only be seen with the help of microscope are often found in lake water, swimming pools, wells, spas, to water reservoirs. When entering the human digestive tract, the shell called the cyst will dissolve and release this parasite in the intestine with the help of acid and pancreatic enzymes.

Symptoms of Giardiasis in Child

Giardiasis is characterized by bloating, stomach cramps, and nausea followed by a fatty diarrhea attack. Some people with  giardiasis may not feel any symptoms, but still have parasites in the body that can spread through their feces.

Symptoms of giardiasis usually begin to appear since 1-3 weeks after the sufferer exposed to parasites. In addition to the symptoms mentioned, other symptoms that may be felt are fatigue, gas or farting, loss of appetite, and weight loss. These symptoms can last up to 2-6 weeks or may be longer. 

In some cases, symptoms of giardiasis recur after subsidence.
Giardiasis can cause sufferers to feel the symptoms even though the parasite has left the body. If not handled properly, patients especially infants and toddlers are also at risk for complications such as:
  • Dehydration. This is triggered by severe diarrhea and can disrupt the body in performing its functions.
  • Lactose intolerance, namely the inability of the body to digest the sugar content in milk well, and can continue even if the infection has disappeared.
  • Impaired physical and mental development due to malnutrition triggered by chronic diarrhea from this condition.

Immediately see a doctor if you feel any of the above symptoms with dehydration, or if you are or just returned from an area that has this endemic.

Treatment of Giardiasis

In some cases, the giardia infection has no symptoms so that the sufferer feels no needs treatment, unless it has the potential to spread the disease to the surrounding environment.

Although the parasite that causes this infection will disappear from the body by itself within a few weeks, the person with giardiasis may still have indigestion for some time. 

Patients with giardiasis who are dehydrated due to this condition will be advised to drink a lot of water so that the body does not lack fluids and can perform its functions properly.

The drugs used for giardiasis do not all give the same result to the sufferer. However, the symptoms of severe giardia infection are usually treated directly by administration of antiparasitic drugs, such as:
Nitazoxanide - This liquid-shaped drug is safe for use by children. Some side effects that can be caused include nausea, abdominal bloating, yellow eyes, and urine water is bright yellow.

Always follow the doctor's instructions and the information contained in the drug package before taking them.

Discuss with a doctor if the patient is an infant, pregnant woman, or has mild symptoms. The doctor will adjust the treatment according to the body's condition, health, and patient's response to treatment.

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