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Travellers diarrhoea

Travellers diarrhoea

What is travellers' diarrhoea?

Travellers' diarrhoea occurs after consuming contaminated food or drinking contaminated water, usually in a foreign country. It is most often caused by a bacterial infection, though in some cases, it is caused by a virus or parasite. Apart from diarrhoea, symptoms include; 

  • nausea
  • stomach pain
  • loss of appetite
  • headache

These symptoms may not appear until after you have returned home. Traveller’s diarrhoea affects between 30% and 50% of all people who visit tropical destinations.

There are several precautions you can take while travelling to minimise your risk of contracting travellers' diarrhoea. Avoid drinking tap water, and only eat food that has been properly cooked. Take care of your own hygiene as well.

If you get travellers' diarrhoea, make sure you rest and keep yourself hydrated. If your symptoms are severe or persist for more than a few days, you may consider a treatment such as Xifaxanta. 

What is Xifaxanta and what is it used for?

Xifaxanta is an antibiotic tablet used to treat travellers' diarrhoea. The active ingredient is an antibiotic called rifaximin. Travellers' diarrhoea comes as a result of bacterial infection and is common in countries in places such as South and South-East Asia, Africa and South America. The way Xifaxanta works is by interfering with the bacteria’s cell structure and preventing it from reproducing.

Xifaxanta tablets can be taken by adults over the age of 18 years and require a prescription. They are taken over the course of three days. Xifaxanta is manufactured by Norgine and is available in 200mg tablets.

How does Xifaxanta work?

Xifaxanta uses an active ingredient called rifamixin, which is a kind of antibiotic. The treatment is localised to work directly in the gut and is largely not taken up into the bloodstream. Rifaximin inhibits the production of an enzyme in the bacteria which stops its growth process.

  • Xifaxanta dosage

    Adults over the age of 18 years for travellers' diarrhoea:

    The standard recommended dose of Xifaxanta is one tablet, three times daily: once every eight hours. For a maximum of 3 days. Swallow the tablet whole with a sip of water. Xifaxanta can be taken either with or without food.

    If your symptoms do not improve after 48 hours, you should see a doctor.