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Treatment

A man being treated for cholera

A man being treated for cholera

Most persons infected with the cholera bacterium have mild diarrhea or no symptoms at all. Only a small proportion, about 5-10%, of persons infected with Vibrio cholerae O1 may have illness requiring treatment at a health center. Cholera patients should be evaluated and treated quickly. With proper treatment, even severely ill patients can be saved.

See the following videos: Defeating Cholera and Managing Dehydration. Note: These videos may contain outdated CDC branding and agency names because they were produced in the 1990s. However, the cholera-related information might still be relevant for cholera treatment or dealing with cholera outbreaks. Please consult the current CDC Cholera page for current cholera treatment recommendations.

Cholera Treatments

  • Rehydration therapy, meaning prompt restoration of lost fluids and salts through rehydration therapy is the primary goal of treatment.
  • Antibiotic treatment, which reduces fluid requirements and duration of illness, is indicated for severe cases of cholera.
  • Zinc treatment has also been shown to help improve cholera symptoms in children.
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