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Brucellosis 

Brucellosis
Chapter:
Brucellosis
DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198729228.003.0049
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date: 17 June 2019

Campylobacter infection is one of the commonest causes of bacterial gastroenteritis in young children. Responsible is a Gram-negative rod commonly found in household pets and raw meat, especially poultry. Over 20 species have been isolated, several of which are pathogenic to humans. The Campylobacter species most frequently associated with human infection are Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli. Infection is caused by direct contact with contaminated food, unpasteurized milk, or water. Incubation is 1–7 days, and the inoculum needed is relative low. Disease is mostly intestinal (diarrhoea, abdominal cramps, vomiting), commonly associated with fever, malaise, and headache. Symptoms resolve within 1–2 weeks, and treatment is mostly supportive, ensuring adequate hydration and electrolyte replacement. Campylobacter fetus can cause sepsis or meningitis in neonates. Complications are uncommon and include pseudoappendicitis, Guillain–Barré syndrome, Miller–Fisher, reactive arthritis, Reiter syndrome, and haemolytic–uraemic syndrome. Antibiotic therapy is not recommended in mild cases. In severe cases or the immunocompromised, antibiotics can be used to shorten the duration of symptoms and Campylobacter excretion, especially if given early. Macrolides (azithromycin and clarithromycin) are suitable first-line antibiotics. A short course of 5–7 days is adequate for gastrointestinal infection. Disease prevention include appropriate handling of raw meat, careful hand hygiene, and thorough cooking of potentially contaminated food.

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