Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Every year, Salmonella is estimated to cause more than 1 million illnesses in the United States, with about 23,000 hospitalizations and 450 deaths. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more about Salmonella infection in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Salmonellosis is an infection with Salmonella bacteria. The infection is acquired through ingestion of contaminated food or water.

Any food can become contaminated if proper care is not taken during preparation. One of the greatest risk factors is ingestion of improperly prepared or stored food, especially undercooked turkey, chicken or undercooked eggs.

Most persons infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after infection. The illness usually lasts four to seven days, and most persons recover without treatment.

However, in some persons, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. In these patients, the Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the blood stream and can cause death unless the person is treated promptly with antibiotics.

The elderly, infants and those with impaired immune systems are more likely to have a severe illness.

To avoid Salmonella infection, wash hands and containers after contact with raw meat and eggs, and cook food thoroughly.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.