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A. J. Lawson

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date: 24 January 2022

Campylobacter jejuni and C. coli are frequent cause of bacterial enteritis in industrialised countries and is a major cause of childhood illness in the developing world. Although deaths due to campylobacteriosis are rare, the morbidity and public health and economic burden is high because of its very high incidence. Campylobacters normally inhabit the intestinal tract of wild birds and domestic animals. Poultry is a major source of campylobacter infection and a large proportion of retail chicken meat is contaminated. Other meats are contaminated to a lesser degree. Human infection is mostly sporadic and outbreaks are uncommon. Infections arise from the consumption of raw or inadequately cooked meat or from other foods contaminated during production or preparation. Contaminated water and raw milk can also act as vehicles of campylobacter infection and have given rise to significant outbreaks. The most effective means of controlling human campylobacteriosis would be the implementation of measures to reduce the contamination of food producing animals during slaughter and processing. Public health education regarding the principles of hygiene and safe food handling are also important.

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