Campylobacteriosis is food borne disease that is caused by the campylobacter bacterium.
Campylobacteriosis occurs much more often in the summer months than in the winter months. Infants, young adults, and males are most likely to get the condition.
What causes campylobacteriosis?
Generally, campylobacteriosis is caused by managing poultry (like chicken or turkey) that is contaminated with the campylobacter bacterium and is raw or undercooked.
For example, you can be infected by cutting poultry meat on a cutting board and then using the unwashed cutting board or utensil to prepare vegetables or other raw or lightly cooked foods. Consuming contaminated milk or water from dirty lakes or streams can also execute in infection.
Campylobacteriosis usually is not transmitted from person to person. But this can happen if you have the condition and do not properly wash your hands. Some people have become infected through contact with the infected stool of a dog or cat.
How is campylobacteriosis diagnosed?
Your doctor will do a medical history and a physical exam and ask you questions about your symptoms, foods you have recently eaten, and your work and home environments. A stool culture can confirm the diagnosis.
What are the symptoms of campylobacteriosis?
The symptoms of campylobacteriosis include diarrhea, cramping, stomach pain, and fever within 2 to 5 days after exposure to the bacteria. Your diarrhea may be bloody, and you may feel sick to your stomach and vomit.
The illness usually lasts 1 week. Some people don't have any symptoms at all. In people with impaired immune systems, campylobacteriosis can be life-threatening.
How is campylobacteriosis treated?
You treat campylobacteriosis by managing any complications until it passes. Dehydration caused by diarrhea and vomiting is one of the most common complications of this disease.
Do not take any type of medicines, including antibiotics and other treatments, unless your doctor recommends them. Most people recover completely within a week after symptoms begin, although sometimes recovery can take up to 10 days.
To prevent oneself from dehydration, take frequent sips of a rehydration drink (such as Pedialyte). Have a cup of water or rehydration drink for each large, loose stool you have.
Soda and fruit juices contain too much sugar and not enough of the important electrolytes that are lost during diarrhea, and they should not be used to rehydrate.
Try to stay with your normal diet as much as possible. Eating your usual diet will help you to get enough nutrition. Doctors believe that eating a normal diet will also help you feel better faster.
But try to avoid foods that are high in fat and sugar. Also avoid spicy foods, alcohol, and coffee for 2 days after all symptoms have disappeared.
In more severe cases, your doctor may recommend antibiotics.
In very rare cases, long-term problems can be faced after having campylobacteriosis. Some people may have arthritis after campylobacteriosis.
Some people may develop a rare disease known as Guillain-Barré syndrome. This happens when your immune system attacks your nerves, which can further lead to paralysis that lasts several weeks and usually requires that you go to a hospital.