You have learnt about the diarrhoea in the foregoing sub-section, now let us take for example a child who has loose motion which contains blood and mucus and pus. What would be your observation or diagnosis. Is it diarrhoea or dysentery? You will surely designate it as dysentery because you know that blood and mucus in loose motions is characteristic of dysentery. So let us examine dysentery in the following discussion.
Dysentery is the passage of loose motion which contains mucus, pus and blood, this is also called as shigellosis.
Dysentery is known to be caused by four group of shilgella organism which include Shigella shiga or dysenlteriae, Shigella flexneri or paradysentiae, Shigella boydii and Shigella sonie. These drganism penetrate the epithelial cells of intestine, and multiply in the submucosa. This leads to inflammation and superficial ulcers which cause bleeding.
The child with dysentery will present you with sudden onset of fever, prostration, vomiting, bloody diarrhoea, abdominal pain and tenesmus. Patient may suffer from shock due to loss of fluids and electrolytes. Sometimes the patient will present with headache, drowsiness, coma, neck rigidity and convulsions.