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What is Rotavirus Gastroenteritis – Treatment, Home Remedies and Prevention

Prior to the initiation of the vaccination programme, rotavirus virus was responsible for causing 2.7 million cases of gastroenteritis in children in the United States. In the year 1998, a rotavirus vaccine was licensed for use in this country and its clinical trials were found to be 80-100 percent successful in preventing diarrhea caused by the virus in children.

In 2006 two newly developed vaccines against rotavirus A infection was brought in the market and found to be safe. In June 2009, on the recommendation of the World Health Organization, rotavirus vaccination was made a part of all immunisation programmes in the country. This article tries to gain further insight on the treatment and prevention methods against this virus.

Treatment of Rotavirus Gastroenteritis:

There is no specific treatment for this disease. The symptoms of the disease should be managed well and the child is to be protected from dehydration. A pinch of salt and sugar is to be added in water and made to drink. If untreated, the child is to be hospitalized and given the fluids by intravenous drip. The body’s blood sugar and electrolytes are monitored too. Viremia, meningitis and encephalitis are some of the rare complications of this disease in children.

Home Remedies of Roatvirus Gastroenteritis:

  • Dairy products, fatty or highly seasoned foods, apple juice, and sugary foods should be avoided.
  • Bland foods like toast and soda crackers should be given to the child.
  • Switching to a liquid diet until the diarrhea is controlled is a good step.
  • Ice pops or crushed ice can be given to suck so that the bay remains hydrated.

Prevention of Rotavirus Gastroenteritis:

Rotarix by GlaxoSmithKline and RotaTeq by Merck are the two vaccines which were found to be safe in the year 2006. These vaccines contain live virus. That is why though more than 100 nations have provided license to these vaccines, only 17 countries in the world have introduced them. Other rotavirus infection vaccines are under development.

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