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Gastroenteritis (cont.)

How Can You Avoid Getting the Stomach Flu (Gastroenteritis)?

With most infections, the key is to block the spread of the organism.

  • Always wash your hands.
  • Eat properly prepared and stored food.
  • Bleach soiled laundry.
  • Vaccinations for Vibrio cholerae, and rotavirus have been developed. Rotavirus vaccination is recommended for infants in the U.S. Vaccines for V. cholerae may be administered to individuals traveling to at-risk areas.
  • Food handlers should not return to work until their symptoms have resolved. Salmonella infections are a special case; those who work in the medical profession or who are food handlers need to have negative stool cultures for Salmonella before being allowed to return to work.

What Does Stomach Flu (Gastroenteritis Infections) Look Like (Pictures)?

<em>Cryptococcus colitis</em> (shown at the arrows). Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University.
Cryptococcus colitis (shown at the arrows). Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University.Click to view larger image.

Pathological changes seen in intestinal lumen with pseudomembranous colitis (indicated by arrows). Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University.
Pathological changes seen in intestinal lumen with pseudomembranous colitis (indicated by arrows). Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University.Click to view larger image.

<em>Strongyloides stercoralis</em> parasite (highlighted by arrows). Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University.
Strongyloides stercoralis parasite (highlighted by arrows). Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University. Click to view larger image.

<em>Giardia lamblia</em> (indicated by the arrows). Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University.
Giardia lamblia (indicated by the arrows). Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University. Click to view larger image.

Normal stain of stool sample looking for ova, parasites, and leukocytes. Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University.
Normal stain of stool sample looking for ova, parasites, and leukocytes. Image courtesy of Alexis Carter, MD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, East Carolina University. Click to view larger image.

REFERENCES:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Estimates of Food Borne Illnesses in the United States." Updated: Ju 15, 2016.
<https://www.cdc.gov/foodborneburden/2011-foodborne-estimates.html>

Tintinalli J, et al. "Tintinalli's Emergency Medicine: a Comprehensive Study Guide." Mcgraw-Hill Education/Medical. 8th edition. 2015.

Wikswo ME, Hall AJ. Outbreaks of acute gastroenteritis transmitted by person-to-person contact--United States, 2009-2010. MMWR Surveill Summ. 2012 Dec 14. 61(9):1-12.


Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/31/2017

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Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

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