The mainstay of treatment for diarrhea is rehydration to replace the fluid and electrolyte losses. This is the cornerstone of oral rehydration therapy (ORT), which has greatly reduced the morbidity and mortality from diarrheal illnesses throughout the world. Rehydration must be combined with the fulfillment of increased nutritional demands. Antibiotics have a very antibiotic: substance that kills or pre-limited role in effectively reducing morbidity and mortality from diarrhea, vents the growth of microorganisms and antimotility and absorbent agents have virtually no role.

It is evident that the morbidity and mortality from diarrhea results from a complex interplay of environmental hazards, risk factors, and treatment response. Interventions to reduce the global impact of diarrhea must therefore be multifactorial in their approach. This is an illness that imposes a large health burden on society, but has avenues for effective intervention. see also Malnutrition; Oral Rehydration Therapy.

Seema Pania Kumar


Basch, Paul (1999). Textbook of International Health. New York: Oxford University Press.

Chen, Lincoln, and Scrimshaw, Nevin (1983). Diarrhea and Malnutrition: Interactions, Mechanisms, and Interventions. New York: Plenum Press.

Semba, Richard, and Bloem, Martin (2000). Nutrition and Health in Developing Countries. Totowa, NJ: Humana Press.

Internet Resources

National Institutes of Health. <> World Health Organization. <>

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