MODE OF TRANSMISSION

  • contact of superficial wounds with seawater or seafood containing the organism

  • ingestion of contaminated water or food (usually raw or undercooked seafood) by immunocompromised persons, especially those with hepatic cirrhosis

  • not transmitted person to person

DISTRIBUTION

  • organism is most commonly found in the Gulf states of the United States and is probably part of the normal marine flora in warmer climates

INCUBATION PERIOD

  • incubation period is 10 to 20 hours

TREATMENT

  • antibiotic therapy

  • surgical drainage may be necessary with soft tissue infections

  • supportive treatment for diarrheal illness (e.g., oral fluid replacement)

PREVENTION AND CONTROL

  • avoidance of exposure of open skin wounds to seawater

  • careful handling of raw or undercooked seafood by persons with superficial wounds

  • avoidance of raw or undercooked seafood, particularly by immunocompromised persons

FACTORS FACILITATING EMERGENCE

  • increased recognition

EMERGENT VIRUSESBovine Spongiform Encephalopathy Agent

DISEASE(S) AND SYMPTOMS

Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in cattle

  • progressive neurological disease, staggering

  • BSE agent has not caused any cases of human disease

DIAGNOSIS

  • histology of brain tissue

  • epidemiological characteristics

  • no serological tests are currently available



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