Salmonella poisoning is a common form of bacteria infection
that occurs most often as a form of food poisoning. Salmonella live in the
intestines of humans and other animals and are usually transmitted through
contact with contaminated foods or animals. Symptoms include diarrhea, fever
and abdominal cramps. The infection usually runs a course of about 4 to 7 days
and most people tend to recover without treatment.
In some cases, however, Salmonella poisoning can be so
severe that the patient may require hospitalization. The
infection can even spread to the blood stream and cause death. The elderly,
infants and those with immune deficiencies are the most at-risk for severe
illness as a result of Salmonella poisoning.
Currently, there isn’t a vaccine to prevent Salmonella poisoning.
Because foods of animal origin can be contaminated with the bacteria, people
should not eat raw or undercooked eggs, poultry or meat. It is also important
that you wash your hands after contact with animals, reptiles in particular.
Reptiles and chicks/ducklings can carry the bacteria so it is not advisable to
have such pets in the same home as small children.
Recently, an outbreak of Salmonella occurred in New
Mexico, leaving 31 people sick. An investigation has
proven that undercooked tomatoes were the culprits.