ORS – the ‘magic bullet’

I have been searching for weeks for good photographs to show the impact Oral Rehydration Salts (ORS) can have on a child with dehydration from diarrhoea. Then a member of the ColaLife Google Group came to my rescue, pointing me to a scientific paper published in 1994 with these amazing pictures showing a girl and boy before and after treatment. Please note the expressions on their mothers’ faces – they say it all.

Before ORT Treatment

Before & After ORT Treatment - Caption - Girl
After ORT Treatment

Before ORT Treatment

Before & After ORT Treatment - Caption - Boy

After ORT Treatment

So, if you can get Oral Rehydration Salts to where children need them and people know how to use them they are magic!

But we must also remember that the educational side of this campaign is also crucial. Ideally, children would not get diarrohoea in the first place so hygiene and sanitation education is also important. And when children do get sick then you need to know how to use the ORS.

So, in this campaign, the distribution of ORS is a ‘device’ for the stimulation of other educational activity. Maybe the ORS should have plastic, educational posters strapped to them that could be placed in places people gather, perhaps the fact that there is a mechanism to distribute ORS would be the catalyst required to stimulate a local extension programme.

You can’t look at these pictures and say this is not something worth fighting for. Can you?


  1. Simon Berry says:

    ORS the magic bullet – amazing pictures – pls retweet – https://tinyurl.com/3gpv33 – #colalife

  2. […] There are more before and after photos in a previous post. […]