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What is dysentery?

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Quick Answer

Dysentery is an inflammation of the intestines that causes pain, fever, bloody stool and diarrhea, states MedicineNet. The condition occurs due to protozoan, bacterial or viral infections, and can cause severe dehydration.

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Dysentery occurs as bacillary dysentery or amoebic dysentery, notes Medical News Today. Bacillary dysentery occurs from shigella bacteria, and poor hygiene is the primary cause. After infection, symptoms typically appear within one to three days and include blood or mucus in the face, increased body temperature and abdominal pain.

Amoebic dysentery occurs from Entamoeba histolytica amoeba, and symptoms include painful passing of stools, watery diarrhea, vomiting and intermittent constipation, details Medical News Today. The amoeba can spread into the bloodstream, causing infection to other organs, and may continue living in the host body even after symptoms have gone.

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