Health authorities in New Zealand’s biggest city have warned of a typhoid outbreak after 10 people were hospitalized with the potentially deadly illness.

The Auckland Regional Public Health Service (ARPHS) said Friday it was tracing people who had been in contact with the confirmed cases and was following protocols to control the spread of the disease.

It could be a serious illness and was potentially fatal, but it could be treated with antibiotics, medical officer of health Dr David Sinclair said in a statement.

Typhoid was spread primarily through water and food, but could be spread person to person, said Sinclair.

Good basic hand-washing was one of the best means of protection.

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Symptoms included a high fever developing over several days, headaches, general weakness and muscle aches.

Stomach pain and constipation are also common but some people get diarrhea.

Sinclair urged anyone with the symptoms feeling see a doctor.

He told Radio New Zealand that the outbreak had developed over the past 10 days or so and the patients were from a range of places in central and southern Auckland.

Most of the typhoid cases in New Zealand were imported, from people coming back into the country, either with symptoms or as carriers, mainly from the Pacific or Southeast Asia. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/