Salmonella

Salmonellosis is one of the most important public health disease problems, affecting more people and animals than any other single disease in agriculture. In Canada, for example, there were 7,138 cases of food-borne salmonellosis in humans during 2003. The native habitat of members of the genus Salmonella is the intestinal tract of warm-blooded and many coldblooded vertebrates. In humans, the incubation period is 6 to 48 hours and produces headache, malaise, nausea, fever, vomiting, abdominal pain, and diarrhea (with and without blood). Salmonella is also capable of invading the intestinal mucosa, entering the blood stream, and causing septicemia, shock, and death. The diagnosis is made through the clinical presentation and confirmation with blood and stool cultures and serology. Treatment is first started empirically pending culture results and then adjusted if necessary. Multi-drug resistant S. typhimurium bacteria have been documented to be present in milk after pasteurization (16,17).

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