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Listeria infection (listeriosis): Causes, Types, Symptoms, Diagnosis ,Treatment , Risk factors , Complications , Prevention

What is Listeria Infection (listeriosis)? 

Listeriosis may be a serious infection caused by the germ eubacteria monocytogenes. folks usually become sick with listeriosis once feeding contaminated food. The sickness primarily affects pregnant women, newborns, older adults, different people|and folks} with weakened immune systems. It’s rare for people in other teams to induce sickness with bacterial infection.

listeria meningitis is sometimes a light illness for pregnant women, however it causes severe disease within the fetus or newborn baby. Some people with eubacteria infections, most typically adults sixty five years and older and people with weakened immune systems, develop severe infections of the blood (causing sepsis) or brain (causing infectious disease or encephalitis). eubacteria infections will generally have an effect on different components of the body, together with bones, joints, and sites within the chest and abdomen.Listeriosis may be a foodborne illness. The germ L. monocytogenes causes listeria meningitis. Listeria monocytogenes is often found in nature, particularly in soil, groundwater, decomposition vegetation and animal excreta (poop).

Most people get listeriosis from eating contaminated foods. The listeriosis period (the time after you initially get infected and when you first show symptoms) varies. it always takes one to 2 weeks, however it is as short as one or two days or as long as 3 months.

What is Listeria Infection (listeriosis)

Explanation of medical terms and concept Listeria infection (listeriosis)

Listeria infection is a foodborne microorganism unhealthiness which will be terribly serious for pregnant women, people older than sixty five and folks with weakened immune systems. It's most ordinarily caused by intake of improperly processed shop meats and unpasteurised milk products. Healthy people seldom become ill from true bacteria infection, however the illness is fatal to unhatched babies, newborns and people with weakened immune systems. Prompt antibiotic treatment can facilitate curb the results of listeria infection. True bacteria can survive refrigeration and even freezing. Therefore those who are at higher risk of great infections ought to avoid eating the types of food presumably to contain true bacteria. You should know that Listeria infection is a rare but potentially serious illness It is caused by the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes which may be present in raw milk and raw milk products Listeria infection can also occur after eating food contaminated with this bacterium Listeriosis begins like a common cold with fever and muscle aches headache and nausea The symptoms are often confused with the flu or other illnesses making it difficult to diagnose early on. 

Symptoms Listeria infection (listeriosis)

Signs and symptoms of true bacteria infection vary betting on the person infected and therefore a part of the body affected. The bacteria are possible to sicken those who are pregnant and their newborns, adults aged sixty five or older, and folks with weakened immune systems. Others are often infected with Listeria, however they seldom become seriously ill.

If you develop a listeria infection, you might have:

  • Fever

  • Chills

  • Muscle aches

  • Nausea

  • Diarrhea

Symptoms could possibly begin a number of days once you've consumed contaminated food, however it will take thirty days or a lot before the primary signs and symptoms of infection begin.

If the listeria infection spreads to your nervous system, signs and symptoms can include:

  • Headache

  • Stiff neck

  • Confusion or changes in alertness

  • Loss of balance

  • Convulsions

Symptoms during pregnancy and in newborns

During pregnancy, a eubacteria infection is probably going to cause solely delicate signs and symptoms within the mother. The implications for the baby, however, are devastating — the baby will die in the uterus or have a grave infection inside many days of being born.

Signs and symptoms of a listeria infection in a newborn can be subtle, but can include:

  • Little interest in feeding

  • Irritability

  • Fever

  • Vomiting

  • Difficulty breathing

When to see a doctor

If you've consumed a food that's been recalled attributable to a eubacterium outbreak, expect signs or symptoms of malady. If you have got a fever, muscle aches, nausea or diarrhea, contact your doctor. An equivalent goes for illness once intake of a probably contaminated product, cherished foods created with change integrity milk or poorly heated hot dogs or delicatessen meats. If you have a high fever, severe headache, stiff neck, confusion or sensitivity to light, obtain emergency care. These signs and symptoms will indicate microorganism meningitis, a grievous complication of a listeria infection.

Causes Listeria infection (listeriosis)

Listeriosis develops once you get contact with the bacterium L. monocytogenes. Most commonly, an individual gets listeria meningitis after uptake contaminated food. A newborn may get the picture from their mother. True bacteria sleep in soil, water, and animal feces. they'll also go on food, on food production equipment, and in cold food storage.

Listeria bacteria can be found in soil, water and animal feces. People can get infected by eating the following:

  • Raw vegetables that have been contaminated from the soil or from contaminated manure used as fertilizer

  • Contaminated meat

  • Unpasteurized milk or foods made with unpasteurized milk

  • Certain processed foods — such as soft cheeses, hot dogs and deli meats that have been contaminated after processing

Unborn babies can contract a listeria infection from the mother.

Risk factors Listeria infection (listeriosis)

Pregnant ladies and other people who have weak immune systems are at highest risk of acquiring a eubacterium infection.CDC estimates that eubacterium is the third leading reason behind death from foodborne illness, or food poisoning, within the United States. Associate in Nursing calculable 1,600 people get sick from eubacterium every year, and concerning 260 die. eubacterium is possibly to sicken pregnant women and their newborns, adults aged sixty five or older, and people with weakened immune systems. People are often infected with Listeria, however they seldom become seriously ill.

Pregnant women and their babies

Pregnant ladies are rather more vulnerable to eubacterium infections than are alternative healthy adults. though a listeria infection may cause solely a gentle malady in pregnant women, consequences for his or her babies will include:

  • Miscarriage

  • Stillbirth

  • Premature birth

  • A potentially fatal infection after birth

People who have weak immune systems

This category includes people who:

  • Are older than 65

  • Have AIDS

  • Are receiving chemotherapy

  • Have diabetes or kidney disease

  • Take high-dose prednisone or certain rheumatoid arthritis drugs

  • Take medications to block rejection of a transplanted organ


Most eubacteria infections are thus delicate; they will go unnoticed. However, in some cases, a listeria infection can cause grievous complications, including:

  • Generalized blood infection

  • Inflammation of the membranes and fluid surrounding the brain (meningitis)


To prevent a listeria infection, follow simple food safety guidelines:

  • Keep things clean. Wash your hands totally with warm, cleanser water before and when handling or getting ready food. When cooking, use hot, soapy water to scrub the utensils, cutting boards and alternative food preparation surfaces. 

  • Scrub raw vegetables. Clean raw vegetables with a scrub brush or vegetable brush under plenty of running water.

  • Cook your food thoroughly. Use a food thermometer to make sure your meat, poultry and egg dishes are cooked to a safe temperature.

Precautions for people particularly at risk

If you're pregnant otherwise you have a weak immune system, be notably cautious regarding listeria. Take extra precautions with these kinds of foods:

  • Soft cheeses and Mexican-style cheeses. Don't eat soft cheeses such as feta, brie, Camembert or blue cheese, or Mexican-style cheeses corresponding to queso whiten and queso fresco, unless it's clear from the packaging that the merchandise was created to change the integrity of milk. 

  • Hot dogs and deli meats. Avoid these unless they're cooked-over till steaming hot. Keep fluid from hot dog packages aloof from different foods, utensils and food preparation surfaces. Wash your hands when handling these products. 

  • Meat spreads. Don't eat cold meat spreads. Canned or shelf-stable — that means they will be safely held on at temperature — meat spreads are acceptable. Refrigerate once opening. 

  • Smoked seafood. These products may be labeled  as star style, lox, kippered or jerky. It's alright to eat them in au gratin dishes. Canned or shelf-stable smoke-cured food is acceptable. 

  • Raw or lightly cooked sprouts. Cook sprouts of any kind thoroughly.

Diagnosis Listeria infection (listeriosis)

Your care supplier will diagnose infectious disease once evaluating your symptoms and conducting medical tests.listeriosis is typically diagnosed when a microorganism culture (a sort of laboratory test) grows eubacteria from a body tissue or fluid, adore blood, humor, or the placenta.A biopsy is commonly the foremost effective thanks to confirm whether or not you have got a listeria infection. In some cases, samples of piddle or spinal fluid are tested as well.

Treatment Listeria infection (listeriosis)

Treatment of true bacteria infection varies, looking at the severity of the signs and symptoms. The majority with delicate symptoms need no treatment. More-serious infections are treated with antibiotics. Throughout pregnancy, prompt antibiotic treatment may facilitate keeping the infection from poignant the baby.Treatment for listeria meningitis depends on however severe your symptoms are and your overall health. If your symptoms are mild and you're otherwise in sensible health, treatment might not be necessary. Instead, your doctor may instruct you to remain home and look after yourself with shut follow-up. Home treatment for listeria meningitis is comparable to treatment for any foodborne illness. To treat a gentle infection at home, you can: 

  • Prevent dehydration by drinking water and clear liquids if vomiting or diarrhea occur.

  • Use over-the-counter medications to manage body aches and fever, similar to anodyne (Tylenol) and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug medication (NSAIDs) like NSAID (Advil or Motrin) or Naprosyn (Aleve).

  • During recovery, eat foods that are straightforward to process. These embody bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast. Limit spicy foods, dairy, alcohol, or fatty foods like meat.

Medical treatments

For additional severe cases of infectious disease, your doctor can visit associated antibiotics. These are medicines that kill bacteria or slow their growth. Some kinds of antibiotics that are usually used for listeriosis embrace SK-Ampicillin and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim). If you've got invasive listeriosis, you’ll doubtless have to be compelled to keep within the hospital and be treated with blood vessel (IV) medications. Antibiotics through an IV will facilitate eliminate the infection, and therefore the hospital employees can anticipate complications.

Treatment in pregnancy

If you’re pregnant, Associate in Nursing have listeriosis, your doctor can wish you to start treatment with antibiotics. They’ll additionally monitor your baby for signs of distress. Newborn babies with an infection will receive antibiotics as long as they’re born.

Preparing for your appointment

If you have got devoured food that has been recalled owing to true bacteria contamination, see a doctor provided that you have signs and symptoms of a listeria infection.

What you can do

Before the appointment, you might want to write a list that answers the following questions:

  • What are your symptoms and when did they start?

  • Are you pregnant? If so, how far along are you?

  • Are you being treated for other medical conditions?

  • What medications and supplements do you take?

You might also want to write a food diary, listing all the foods you've eaten for as far back as you can reliably remember. Tell your doctor if foods you've eaten have been recalled.

What to expect from your doctor

To help with diagnosis, your doctor might ask if you've recently eaten:

  • Soft cheeses, such as brie, Camembert or feta, or Mexican-style cheeses, such as queso blanco or queso fresco

  • Raw milk or cheeses made of raw (unpasteurized) milk

  • Processed meats, such as hot dogs or deli meats

  • Any foods that have been recalled

General summary

Can Listeria go away on its own?

Listeria a bacteria commonly found in soil and water is usually harmless However when it enters your body through contaminated food such as undercooked meat or unpasteurized milk products it can cause an infection called listeriosis The infection is most commonly contracted during pregnancy or infancy Listeria can spread to the nervous system and brain causing headaches stiff neck and confusion It may also lead to miscarriages and stillbirths (in pregnant women) meningitis (in infants) blood infections or diarrhea The bacteria is not killed by freezing or cooking at temperatures of 165 degrees F; only high heat can destroy the organism.

How do you treat Listeria at home?

Listeria bacteria is a common cause of infection in humans and animals The most common symptoms of listeriosis are gastrointestinal problems including diarrhea stomach cramps and fever Pregnant women usually have milder symptoms than other people but their infections can lead to miscarriage or stillbirth Healthy adults may not experience any symptoms at all although they could be carriers of the bacteria without realizing it Bacteria that has spread beyond the gastrointestinal tract can cause meningitis respiratory illness and bloodstream infections.

How long does Listeria stay in your system?

Listeria monocytogenes or Listeria is found primarily in soil and water It causes a type of food poisoning called listeriosis The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that about 1,600 cases of listeriosis occur each year in the United States Although most people can recover from the illness it is especially dangerous for pregnant women The infection can result in miscarriage or even death among fetuses or newborns if they catch the disease from their mothers during pregnancy For this reason pregnant women should avoid eating certain foods that are at risk of containing Listeria.

What are the first signs of Listeria?

Listeria is a type of bacteria that can cause food poisoning Listeria is commonly found in raw meat unpasteurized milk and dairy products seafood pasteurized or unpasteurized fruit juices and soft cheeses While anyone can become infected with listeria bacteria it's most dangerous to pregnant women because they can pass the infection on to the fetus The first signs of listeria are flu-like symptoms that include fever and muscle aches Headache stiff neck and confusion may also occur as the disease progresses The illness usually lasts a few days but could last up to three weeks if untreated; severe cases may require hospitalization for intrave.

How do you get rid of Listeria?

Listeria monocytogenes bacteria grow in temperatures between 41 and 120 degrees Listeria is found mainly in soft cheeses such as brie feta and camembert It can also be found in smoked meats hot dogs pâté raw seafood (such as oysters) and ready-to-eat deli meats The bacteria can be killed by cooking food to 165 degrees or pasteurizing it at 140 degrees for two minutes.

What foods contain Listeria?

Listeria is an organism that can cause severe and sometimes fatal infections in young children frail or elderly people and others with weakened immune systems Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever severe headache stiffness nausea abdominal pain and diarrhea Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever severe headache stiffness nausea abdominal pain and diarrhea Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women People in the later stages of pregnancy are at increased risk of Listeriosis if they eat.

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Listeria infection (listeriosis): Causes, Types, Symptoms, Diagnosis ,Treatment , Risk factors  , Complications , Prevention

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