What is botulism?
Botulism is a rare, but serious and potentially fatal disease. It is usually caused by ingesting botulinum toxins which are neurotoxins formed in the foods contaminated by Clostridium botulinum bacterias. It is transmitted through food or coming in contact with contaminated soil, or by wounds. Human to human transmission is not known for this disease.
Clostridium botulinum is a common bacteria, but require anaerobic conditions to grow. Meaning, they require less oxygen to thrive and thus are very common in canned foods. Spores of this bacterias are heat resistant and exist widely in the environment. There are seven different forms of botulinum toxins known, out of those, four can infect humans, while other three infect fishes, birds and mammals.
There are three types of botulism known-
- Foodborne botulism- This type may spread through the canned food and undercooked meals.
- Wound botulism- The bacterias in this type enter through the cut wounds and can cause very serious infections.
- Infant botulism- This is the most common type of infection, which typically affect the babies between the ages of 2 to 8 months. This happen when the bacterial spores start growing inside the intestines of the baby.
Homeopathic treatment can be very effective in the case of botulism. Best homeo clinic give complete solution for the disease with rapid relief.
There are different causes for different types of botulism-
- Foodborne botulism- Around 15% of botulism are know to be foodborne. They are most commonly caused by consuming home canned or commercially canned foods. They are also known to be present in- preserved vegetables such as mushrooms, green beans, spinach, etc; fermented and salted fishes; meat products.
- Wound botulism- They bear the weight of 20% of the botulism caused around the world. This is caused when the spores of the bacteria enter the body through the open cut wounds.
- Infant botulism- This is the most common type and accounts for about 65% of the cases of botulism. It most commonly happens because of exposure to contaminated soil and eating foods like honey and corn syrup, which have maximum chances of contamination. These spores enter the baby’s intestines and start growing in there.
Sign and symptoms
- Foodborne botulism- The sign and symptoms usually come 12 to 36 hours after the toxin enters the body. Sign and symptoms include-
- Dryness in mouth
- Difficulty in swallowing or speaking
- Blurring and doubling of the vision
- Breathing difficulties
- Abdominal discomfort
- Nausea and vomiting
- Dropping of eyelids
- Wound botulism- Signs and symptoms usually appear 10 days after the toxin has entered the body and are very similar to the foodborne botulism like-
- Difficult speech and swallowing
- Blurring or doubling of vision
- Facial weakness on both sides of the face
- Dropping eyelids
- Trouble in breathing
- Infant botulism- Sign and Symptoms begin 18 to 36 hours after ingestion of toxin and include-
- Floppy movements due to muscle weakness
- Weak cry
- Irritable behaviour
- Dropping of eyelids
- Drooling of saliva
- Difficulty in sucking the nippes
Botulism affect the nerves of muscle control of the body, which can lead to many fatal complications. The most common complication is paralysis of the respiratory muscles which may make it difficult to breathe and is the most common cause of death due to botulism. Other complications may be- difficulty of speech and swallowing, muscle weakness, etc.
Doctor will check for the signs of muscle weakness like dropping of eyelids and difficult speech. He will carefully take the medical history and ask about the foods that the person has consumed recently in one to two days.
In case of infant botulism doctor will ask if the baby has consumed honey or similar products recently and check for physical signs of disease.
Doctor Mai suggest blood and stool test to complete the diagnosis.
Homeopathic medicines can very well control the symptoms of botulism. Medicines are very effective in reducing the intensity of the symptoms and easily cure the condition.
Best homeo clinic give rapid relief and do not allow the symptoms to progress to dangerous levels. Homeopathic medicines reduce the weakness of the muscles and let them work normally to prevent complications.