E. COLI

Treat before you eat!

What is E.Coli?

E.Coli is a bacteria group that has many uses. Most strands of E.Coli are actually helpful or completely harmless, but there are a few that can be dangerous. That strand of E.Coli is called STEC E.Coli O157:H7, and is the most common of the E.Coli strands.

Symptoms

While E.coli (under most circumstances) only has a 0-2% death rate, the symptoms can give a horrible experience to anyone who contracts it. Symptoms include vomiting, bloody stool, abdominal pain, cramps, and occasionally a fever. In severe cases, E.coli can cause bowel necrosis (tissue death).

Infection

E.coli is a communicable disease, and can be contracted in many ways. You can be infected by ingesting raw or undercooked meats, eating food that has come in contact in raw food. By drinking dirty water or infected water, you can get E.coli., as well as well as drinking water that is also used by animals. When you come in contact with someone who hasn't washed their hands after handling raw meat or dirty water, you have the chance of being infected.

How can you protect yourself?

By thoroughly cooking all meats, you can kill the bacteria that will make you sick. Separate raw meats from other foods. Properly treat water, and always wash your hands to prevent spreading the disease. When you begin to feel the symptoms of E.coli, tell a doctor or go to the hospital to prevent further infection.

Recent Outbreaks

E.coli outbreaks have occurred throughout history, but there are some recent examples. In 2015, a widespread outbreak began when E.coli was found in some Chipotle restaurants, as well as in Costco Chicken Salads. While the outbreak was eventually subdued, it made many people sick and cost both Costco and Chipotle a lot of money to recall all of the infected product.

CItations

Information received from:

Manning, Shannon. "Escherichia Coli". Chelsea House, 2005. Print.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention