Shigella sonnei was the organism isolated from the patient’s blood. She recovered completely after 5 days of treatment with ciprofloxacin.
Shigella symptoms: fever, stomach cramps, nausea, severe diarrhea, dehydration, low white blood cell counts and death.
It takes only 10 – 200 Shigella organisms to infect someone.
Shigella infects colonic epithelial cells with loss of blood, water and salt from the damaged colon. Bloodstream invasion and death occur in severe cases.
Worldwide, 5 – 15% of all diarrhea cases can be linked to Shigella.
Most cases and deaths occur in children younger than 5 years.
Infected children can suffer seizures.
Shigella flexneri causes problems in developing countries with poor hygiene and limited clean drinking water
Shigella dysenteriae is known for large outbreaks of disease.
Shigella sonnei is most common in developed countries.
Shigella infections occur during summer and early fall in temperate regions and during rainy season in tropical areas.
High risk groups include children in day-care centers, homosexual men, individuals in custodial institutions, migrant workers and travelers to developing countries.
1) Foods washed with fecally contaminated water or handled with dirty hands
(tossed salads, chicken, and shellfish)
2) Drinking contaminated tap or swimming pool water
3) Anal sexual contact
4) Flies (pick up the Shigella by landing on feces)
INCUBATION / DURATION
1 – 7 days / Usually lasts for 4-7 days
Shigella is contagious in the victim’s stools for 4 weeks after infection.
Asymptomatic carriers can also spread the infection for several months.
Shigella bacteria can be cultured from stool or a rectal swab.
Shigella organisms (especially those from Southeast Asia) are often resistant to multiple antibiotics.
Healthy people usually require only rehydration.
No vaccine is available against Shigella.
Handwashing and the below food and water safety precautions are the best protection.
Eat only food that is fully cooked and served hot.
Wash fruit in clean water and then peel it yourself.
Food and beverages from street vendors are often not safe.
Boiled water drinks served steaming hot (tea and coffee) are safe.
Unopened, factory-sealed cans or bottles, carbonated beverages, commercially prepared fruit drinks, bottled water, alcoholic beverages, and pasteurized drinks are considered safe.
Water on the outside of cans and bottles may be contaminated. Wipe them dry before opening or drinking from them.
Ice may be made from contaminated water. Ask that your drinks have no ice.