Thursday, September 10, 2009
I posted a shot of the above bed previously, but at the time, I didn't know what it was. A bed, obviously, and one with a hole cut in the middle to allow non-ambulatory patients to go to the bathroom. And yes, that's true, but this bed is specifically designed for cholera sufferers, and is called a "cholera bed".
Refugees/IDPs (internally displaced people) are especially susceptible to cholera infection because the disease is transmitted when bacteria in feces comes into contact with the mouth, either via contaminated water, unwashed hands, flies, unhygienic latrines or some combination of the above.
In developed countries cholera is easily prevented and treated, but among refugees/IDPs it can and often does result in death, and not a pleasant one, if there is such a thing. Vomiting and diarrhea can result in fluid loss of up to one liter an hour, and left untreated, cholera can be fatal in up to 60 percent of cases.
Cholera trivia: American President James Polk died from cholera.