(RxWiki News) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is investigating a Salmonella outbreak that may be tied to chickens and other backyard poultry.
The CDC announced that public health officials are investigating Salmonella outbreaks in multiple states. The majority of those sickened in these outbreaks had been in contact with backyard poultry.
So far, 163 people have become sick with Salmonella in 43 states, the CDC reported. Among those, 34 have had to go to the hospital. And no deaths have been reported.
Because many people recover from Salmonella without requiring medical care, the actual number of people who have become sick in these outbreaks is likely higher than reported, according to the CDC.
Salmonella is a bacterial infection that usually lasts for between four and seven days. While most people get better without medical treatment, some have to be hospitalized. Serious illness is more common in the very old, very young and those with weakened immune systems. Symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, stomach pain, fever and chills.
Poultry like chickens and ducks can carry Salmonella without appearing sick. The CDC recommended the following precautions to keep yourself healthy:
- Don't snuggle or kiss poultry.
- Don't let young children touch poultry or anything in the animals' living space.
- Keep poultry and supplies outside.
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after touching poultry, coops or related items.
The CDC said it would release more information as it becomes available.
If you are experiencing a high fever, persistent diarrhea, bloody stool, dehydration or vomiting so severe that you cannot keep fluids down, seek immediate medical care. If you believe you have been exposed to Salmonella, contact your health care provider for guidance.