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Thread: Watch out for parasites!

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Watch out for parasites!

    I just returned from my trip to Puerto Plata and have some helpful infor for those of you traveling.
    I came down with a parasite the second day I was there. I have no idea how this happened since I did not drink the water. I did in fact brush my teeth with it though. I also ate dinner at a Dominican's house which was the usual rice, beans, chicken.
    I started vomiting and then for the next week had terrible stomach cramps, diarrhea, of and on.
    I ended up going to the hospital in Puerta Plata where the doctor said that I had an amoeba and wrote down a list of medications I should get at the pharmacy! i only bought the antibiotic and refused the rest since I didn't know what they were. I also refused the pain shot I was offered in the hospital. You may know why!
    Anyhow just a forwarning: if you feel sick don't wait like I did. I didn't think it was anything and just an adjustment to the food, climate. Also be especially careful of the water even brushing teeth, rinsing of fruit, vegetables. Don't do it! My dominican friends did not get sick and ate the same things I did. Foreigners are very prone to these parasites unlike the people that live there.

  2. #2
    Ken
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    Dominicans have built up resistence to many of the bugs that attack foreigners. But parasites are a problem for Dominicans, also.

    ms. matilda is right. Don't use untreated water from the faucet to brush your teeth, wash vegetables, etc. Use bottled water or treat water with clorox (cloro) or a commercial product called Purissima that is sold in many supermarkets and farmacias. Also be very careful about eating food sold by street vendors.

    A product call fel-6 (fel seis in Spanish) is sold for approx US$1 in most farmacias. There are 6 tablets; 1 in morning and 1 in evening for 3 days. It kills the 6 parasites most often found in man. If you think there is any chance you might have picked up a parasite during your visit, take the fel-6 as a precaution.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Watch out for parasites!

    Originally posted by ms.mathilda
    I did in fact brush my teeth with it though. I also ate dinner at a Dominican's house which was the usual rice, beans, chicken.
    I started vomiting and then for the next week had terrible stomach cramps, diarrhea, of and on.
    I ended up going to the hospital in Puerta Plata where the doctor said that I had an amoeba and wrote down a list of medications I should get at the pharmacy! i only bought the antibiotic and refused the rest since I didn't know what they were.
    The water is not safe for brushing either, since it is still inside your mouth and you don't need many parasites. Ditto with rice though the boiling and the steam should kill the bugs in the water but really a rolling boil for 10 minutes is safest.

    My buddy got Giardisis probably from bananas and had to take both antibiotics and Flagyl for 6 weeks. - if you are back in USA or wherver you neeed to see a physician as the amoebas can cause long term damage.

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    You don't get Giardia from Bananas. You get it from Water or can be sexually transmitted.

    One cell protozoa that causes havoc with the small intestine and the intestinal track. Horrible if not treated. Dehydration will kill you.

    I just got a great business idea. A "Lose weight Camp" in the DR. Just serve the water straight up Bring on the Fatties!

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    [QUOTE]Originally posted by Ken
    [B]Dominicans have built up resistence to many of the bugs that attack foreigners. But parasites are a problem for Dominicans, also.

    ms. matilda is right. Don't use untreated water from the faucet to brush your teeth, wash vegetables, etc. Use bottled water or treat water with clorox (cloro) or a commercial product called Purissima that is sold in many supermarkets and farmacias. Also be very careful about eating food sold by street vendors.

    A product call fel-6 (fel seis in Spanish) is sold for approx US$1 in most farmacias. There are 6 tablets; 1 in morning and 1 in evening for 3 days. It kills the 6 parasites most often found in man. If you think there is any chance you might have picked up a parasite during your visit, take the fel-6 as a precaution.

    Good old fel6 we used it years ago so I guess it stilll works.
    Last edited by richard; 07-09-2002 at 02:52 PM.

  6. #6
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    Default giardiasis

    Giardiasis occurs worldwide, not only in the DR.

    Giardiasis is a disease caused by a one-celled parasite with the scientific name Giardia lamblia. The disease is characterized by intestinal symptoms that usually last one week or more and may be accompanied by one or more of the following: diarrhea, abdominal cramps, bloating, flatulence, fatigue, and weight loss. Although vomiting and fever are listed as relatively frequent symptoms, they have been uncommonly reported by people involved in waterborne outbreaks of giardiasis in the United States. Giardia, however, rarely causes intestinal bleeding. Therefore, blood in the stool of a patient with giardiasis almost always indicates the presence of a second disease.


    Three drugs are available in the United States to treat giardiasis: quinacrine (Atabrine*), metronidazole (Flagyl*), and furazolidone (Furoxone*). All are prescription drugs.
    (*) Use of trade names is for purposes of identification only.

    Just be careful of what you drink, "Don't Drink the water." and watch what you eat, hopefully the veggies have been washed with purified or boiled water.

    For more information check this link http://gorp.com/gorp/health/wtrflfaq.htm

    A very long and comprehensive article

  7. #7
    Ken
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    Purissima is a good product to know about. Sold in many supermarkets and farmacias (blue bottle) and comes in a variety of sizes, including a bottle small enough to carry in your purse, backpack, or pocket. (Bottle that size costs about RD$25) It is very concentrated; only a very small amount required. You may want to carry a bottle with you during you visit as a precaution. Before you drink something that you aren't sure is purified, put a drop or two in the glass and stir. You can do the same with the water you take from the faucet in your hotel room to brush your teeth.

    I have been relying on Purissima for many years, so can recommend it based on personal experience.

    My wife also puts it in the water she uses to wash vegetables. In that case, more Purissima than is needed to purify water for drinking is required. And the vegetables must be submerged in the treated water for at least 5 minutes.

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    thanks to everyone for the info- I wish i new about Purissma before!
    Rick do you really think I should see a doctor now that I'm home? I took the antibiotics for 5 days and feel great now. But now I'm worried.....
    One more question: The antibiotics I received in the DR are called:
    Entero Bacticel written underneath are the names: Attapulguita and Cotrimoxazol. Does anyone know if these are similiar to the drugs in the US that are common to treat parasites?
    Thanks again,
    Mattie
    Last edited by ms.mathilda; 07-09-2002 at 05:12 PM.

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    Originally posted by ms.mathilda
    thanks to everyone for the info- I wish i new about Purissma before!
    Rick do you really think I should see a doctor now that I'm home? I took the antibiotics for 5 days and feel great now. But now I'm worried.....
    One more question: The antibiotics I received in the DR are called:
    Entero Bacticel written underneath are the names: Attapulguita and Cotrimoxazol. Does anyone know if these are similiar to the drugs in the US that are common to treat parasites?
    Thanks again,
    Mattie
    The Cotrimoxazol sounds a lot like an anti fungal/protozoal agent but as my friend took Flagyl ( same sort of thing) for some time more than 5 days I would check with a doctor - they test, hmm...shall we say... certain "output" to see if the beasts are present. I recommended to him and he went to, a tropical medicine specialist however Giardisis is common in USA as well, but there are other amoebic pesties, so maybe that is the best course of action.

  10. #10
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    Originally posted by jazzcom
    You don't get Giardia from Bananas. You get it from Water or can be sexually transmitted.
    I should have been more specific, my friend of course stayed away frm the water ( which is filtered in the hotel, but not in my opinion adequate to drink it), used bottled for tooth brushing etc., of course. The suggestion was that the bananas which he ate copiously and other fruit may be sprayed or washed and the non-stem end (of bananas) is quite permeable to protozoa and can/should be cut off to afford the protection of the skin farther down.

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