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Campylobacter Infection

Campylobacter Infection Causes

Campylobacter organisms, characterized by their curved or spiral form, motile, non-spore-forming and gram-negative rods, cause Campylobacteriosis. The C. jejuni bacteria, which are normally found in cattle, swine and birds, commonly cause the disease but can also be caused by C. coli, C. upsaliensis and C. lari. A tissue injury in the gut is one of the causes of the effects of campylobacteriosis. Some C. jejuni strains also produce a cholera-like enterotoxin.

Campylobacter Infection Definition

Campylobacteriosis is an infection caused by the bacteria campylobacter or most commonly known as C. jejuni. Considered as among the most common human bacterial infections, it can be transmitted in several ways such as fecal-oral, person-to-person sexual contact and ingestion of contaminated food or water. When infected with the bacteria, an inflammatory and sometimes bloody diarrhea or dysentery syndrome may be experienced. It may include cramps, fever and pain. Campyolabacteriosis is usually self-limiting.

Campylobacter Infection Symptoms and Signs

Among the early, non-specific symptoms of campylobacteriosis is headache, fever and myalgias that may last up to 24 hours while the actual latent period may last from 1-6 days or 2-5 days. Actual symptoms therefore are typically developed in 1-2 days. Actual symptoms include diarrhea, cramps, dysenteria, abdominal pains and fever as high as 40 degrees Celsius. The route of transmission is also a factor on the symptoms. For those who participate in anoreceptive intercourse, the disease may be more localized to the distal end of the colon and can also be called proctocolitis. Symptoms of the disease are similar to those of other diseases. Abdominal pains and tenderness that are localized can be mimicking acute appendicitis.

Campylobacter Infection Treatment

In most cases, the infection can be self-limiting. Treatment can be symptomatic, usually reposition of liquid and electrolyte replacement. Said interventions are generally enough for human infections. Using antibiotics meanwhile is contentious. Loperamide, which is an antimotility agent, can lead to intestinal perforation in any invasive diarrhea and prolonged illness. It is therefore advised to avoid taking such medication. For children, erythromycin can used though some studies show that it can eliminate the Campylobacter organism from the stool rather rapidly without affecting the duration of the illness. Kids with dysentery caused by C. jejuni however can benefit from early treatment using erythromycin. Among animals, enrofloxacin and sarafloxacin were used to treat poulty infections in single instances. It was found out that the treatment only promoted the development of fluoroquinolone-resistant populations instead of eliminating the bacteria leading the FDA to ban the practice.

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