Cholera can be conquered
Medicine in action
Byron Motion Pictures.
United States. Navy
Washington, D.C. : Byron Motion Pictures, c1946
Cholera -- drug therapy
Cholera -- prevention & control
Vibrio cholerae -- isolation & purification
Instructional Films and Videos
See catalog record: 9300033A
This film outlines the work of United States Navy Epidemiology Unit no. 50, which was sent to Calcutta, India in early 1945 to conduct a controlled experiment to determine the value of chemotherapy in the treatment of cholera. Standard bacteriological methods were followed in typing the specific cholera vibrio causing the then-current epidemic in Calcutta. Stool cultures were taken by rectal swab, streaked out on bile-salt agar plates, and incubated for 12 hours. The cholerastrains were then typed by the agglutination method. Rabbits were used to produce the specific agglutinating sera. Ninety-five percent of the vibrio present in this epidemic were the Ogawa strain, three percent were the Inaba strain, and two percent were not agglutinable. Patients exhibiting the typical symptoms of cholera--prostration, emaciation, sunken eyes and cheeks, pinched noses, rigor and tremor expecially of the lower extremities, and dehydration--are shown lying on cots. Patients exhibit dry, wrinkled, "washerwoman's" hands and feet. Rice-water stools and projectile vomiting drain away the body's fluids, leading to prostration, shock, and death. Dry gangrene is occasionally present. Traditional therapy was oral administration of coconut milk. Injection of saline into collapsed veins to thin "currant jelly" blood has also been tried but with limited success. Good initial results with IM penicillin were obtained. Sulfadiazine administered orally was found to be more effective than penicillin, but recovery was still not assured. The best results were obtained by the IV administration of plasma combined with the oral administration of sulfadiazine. Procedures for keeping U.S. military personnel cholera-free are outlined over footage illustrating good hygiene practices and control of food, water, and toilet facilities. Footage includes: urban, rural, and river scenes in India illustrating the routes of choleracontamination and spread; a funeral pyre; laboratory work in identification of the cholera vibrio; examples of all the patient symptoms and therapies mentioned herein.
Received: Jan. 10, 1961 as a donation from the U.S. Navy.