Enterotoxicosis

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Staphylococcal enterotoxicosis[edit | edit source]

It is one of the most common food poisonings. It is caused by a thermostable toxin Staphylococcus aureus. The bacteria can withstand 20 minutes of boiling. There are five types of toxins (A-E).

The source of the infection can be people working with foods having bacteria in the nasopharynx or panaritium and especially foods that are left to lie down or served heated (cream, confectionery, meatloaf, pâtés).

Clinical picture[edit | edit source]

The disease begins soon (1-6 hours) after ingestion of a contaminated diet. There is persistent vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps and headaches. Staphylococcal enterotoxicosis occurs without fever. The sudden onset frightens (especially if the disease breaks out in more than one person at a time), but disappears within 24 hours (ie benign course).

Therapy[edit | edit source]

Oral rehydration.

Alimentary poisoning by Bacillus cereus toxins[edit | edit source]

It produces two toxins. One has a short incubation period, the other a longer one.

The thermostable toxin type has a short incubation period. It produces toxin in products that are heated up (pasta, pre-cooked rice). Thermolabile toxin is produced by bacteria directly in the intestine (from meat, milk and vegetables).

Clinical picture[edit | edit source]

1–6 hours after a meal comes nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain (diarrhea occurs in about a third of those infected). Symptoms of thermolabile toxin appear after 8-16 hours (watery diarrhea without fever, vomiting is rare).

Therapy[edit | edit source]

Both Bacillus cereus poisonings are benign and resolve.

Clostridium perfringens type A toxin poisoning[edit | edit source]

Especially in winter and spring, after eating dishes with meat sauce of beef or poultry. Thermolabile toxin, formed in the small intestine.

Clinical picture[edit | edit source]

After 8-16 hours there is considerable abdominal pain and shortly afterwards diarrhea. Fever and vomiting are not common. Diarrhea is numerous, but the disease is benign.

Therapy[edit | edit source]

Rehydration will suffice, the problem will subside within a few days.


Links[edit | edit source]

Related articles[edit | edit source]

Sources[edit | edit source]


References[edit | edit source]

  • HAVLÍK, Jiří. Infektologie. 2. edition. Praha : Avicenum, 1990. 393 pp. ISBN 80-201-0062-8.


  • LOBOVSKÁ, Alena. Infekční nemoci. 1. edition. Praha : Karolinum, 2001. 263 pp. ISBN 80-246-0116-8.