Botulism is very rare case of paralytic disease which usually occurs by using unhygienic and infected food. Botulism is named after botulus, which means sausage inLatin. Poorly treated sausages were the leading cause which was identified by German physicians in 1824. In 1895, scientists had isolated the bacteria responsible for botulism which was a very important step in history of medicine.
Botulism occurs because of botulinum toxin from bacteria in the Clostridiumgenus. The toxin interferes with the central nervous system and causes unclear vision, nausea, vomiting, breathing problem, muscle weakness and lastly paralysis. This can only be cured with an antitoxin which stops the toxin from attaching to the cells. This disease necessitates weeks, and sometimes months, of recovery and can even lead to death if not taken care duly in time.
The botulinum toxin multiplies in a relatively anaerobic surrounding like canned foods. And if the conditions are unfriendly, they remain present till positive conditions are available. The most widespread type of botulism is infant botulism, which occurs in young children, who are vulnerable to botulinum spores living in the air and soil.
Though this kind of food poisoning in canned foods is difficult to avoid, steps should be taken to minimize the threat. General causes towards botulism are mostly by herbed olive oils, preserved fish, poorly kept baked potatoes, and unhygienic preserved food. Food safety procedures should be followed judiciously. Infants should not be given honey which is known to contain botulinum spores.
Remember the most important thing is always handle food with utmost care.
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